09-27-14 - It was just a routine flight. Well, not exactly routine... It was a special Japan Air Lines 747 cargo flight to carry a load of French wine from Paris to Tokyo.
The flight plan would carry flight 1628 from Paris to Reykjavik, Iceland, across the North Atlantic and Greenland, then across Canada to Anchorage, Alaska, and finally across the Pacific to Tokyo.
The crew consisted of veteran Captain Kenju Terauchi, co-pilot Takanori Tamefuji, and flight engineer Yoshio Tsukuba.
On November 16, 1986, laden with wine, JAL1628 took off from Paris and flew the first leg of the trip, to Reykjavik. The next day, they continued, flying over Greenland and then across northern Canada without event.
Just after they crossed into Alaska, at 5:09 PM local time, Anchorage Air Traffic Control contacted them on the radio to report initial radar contact. The Anchorage flight controller asked them to turn 15 degrees to the left and head for a point known as Talkeetna on a heading of 215 degrees. They were at 35,000 feet and traveling at a ground speed of about 600 mph.