Point of Divergence
In the late 1950's, jet airlines started becoming popular, threatening ocean liner annd intercity passenger rail travel. That all changed on July 14, 1957. During a routine flight between New York and London, a passenger plane mysteriously disappeared. A search revealed that the plane had crashed as a result of a mechanical failure with both jet engines. Over the next few weeks, more jetliners began crashing, whether it was over the Atlantic, the Pacific, or over land, all because of engine failures. Quite mysteriously, the older propellor craft worked flawlessly, but were slower.
As a result of the rash of crashes, the public suddenly became afraid of air travel. They began flocking back to ocean liners and passenger trains, surprising the ocean liner companies and railroads, especially Cunard.
As air travel started to experience a rapid decline, many airlines went out of service. The situation began to grow dire for Pan Am and Flying Tiger, who found themselves with a ton of planes and staff waiting for passengers...and no business. They couldn't even attract freight business, as shippers began to send their goods by rail.