Since we’ve just celebrated May Day we thought it would be a good time to share an interesting “Mayday morsel” with all our Fun Languages fans. And it has nothing to do with an ancient Northern Hemisphere Spring festival or celebrating the achievements of workers!
What we’re talking about is the emergency code word “Mayday” used internationally as a distress signal in voice procedure radio communications.
Did you know …
The Mayday procedure word originated in 1923 with Frederick Stanley Mockford a senior radio officer at Croydon Airport in London. Mockford was asked to think of a word that would indicate distress and would easily be understood by all pilots and ground staff in an emergency. Since much of the traffic at the time was between Croydon and Le Bourget Airport in Paris, he proposed the word “Mayday” from the French “m’aider” (shortening of venez m’aider “come help me!”)