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The Jetpod Taxi is a Great Idea!

British inventor dies in crash on test flight of his flying taxi A British pilot hailed as “an aviation entrepreneur” was killed when his prototype plane crashed during take-off on a test flight in Malaysia. Michael Robert Dacre, 53, was flying a Jetpod aircraft, developed by his own British-based company, Avcen, when it came down at an airstrip in Taiping yesterday. The plane, which was being tried out at Tekah airstrip near the northern town, is being developed to take off and land over short distances and cruise at low levels at 500km/h (310 mph). It would need only 125 metres (about 400ft) to take off or land, allowing runways to be built close to the centre of cities, and would be quiet enough to not be noticeable above city traffic.

Mr Dacre had reached a height of 200 metres but the aircraft then plummeted to the ground and burst into flames, said Mohd Sobri Abdullah, senior operations officer for Taiping fire and rescue service.

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One of the ideas behind the aircraft was for commuters to use them as flying taxis. Avcen claimed that Jetpods would enable quick, quiet and cheap travel to and from cities, making it possible, for example, to travel the 24 miles from Woking, Surrey, to Central London in just four minutes. Because it could make so many trips, fares for a flight from Heathrow to Central London could cost about £40 or £50.
In an interview a few years ago Mr Dacre said: “We see it as very much a ‘park and fly’ concept. You drive to a pick-up site, get on the aircraft, and off you go. But people shouldn’t think that these things are going to be whizzing around crashing into each other. They’ll be following set routes.
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“Jetpods are meant to be a workhorse, a taxi cab in the air, for on-demand free-roaming traffic. We know that cities like Moscow, Tokyo and New York are crying out for something like this, and there’s nothing remotely like it at the moment.”

Link to Avcen