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In 1952, British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) started passenger jet flights with De Havilland Comets. But the flights were stopped after several Comets exploded in the air. Investigators discovered serious flaws in the plane's structure. De Havilland engineers then designed an improved Comet. In 1958, BOAC used the new Comets to begin jet passenger service across the Atlantic. American companies also built successful jet transports in the late 1950s and these aircraft quickly dominated international air transportation. The most successful was the Boeing 707, which began services across the Atlantic and across the United States in 1959.

BOAC later became part of British Airways.

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