Pompano Beach, FLORIDA – The Goodyear blimp is one of the most identifiable aircraft the world.
It takes a crew of 15 to get this one dirigible in Pompano Beach, Fla. off the ground and into the air, pulling guide-ropes by hand, as it's been done for a hundred years.
Chief Pilot Marty Chandler says he thinks he's got the best job in the world, but the greatest aspect he says by far is the view.
"Fly the entire Florida coastline, you've got nothing but scenic ocean views all day long. You see different types of fish and mammals in the water," says Chandler, including sharks.
That's doesn't include the Goodyear blimp's trademark views -- shared with TV viewers around the world -- when they hover miles above to capture sporting events like baseball playoffs or the Super Bowl. If it's a big championship, you can bet the Goodyear blimp is slowly lurking around.
And keeping this zeppelin air-worthy does take some acrobatic maintenance.
Thomas McKewon is a rigger whose job it is to patch tears, repair cables and balance the ratio of helium to air that keeps him scrambling over the skin of craft.
"It's kind of obviously pretty bouncy, but it's actually quite fun being up here."
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The blimp is lighter than air, moves forward with propellers and rises and descends by turning this wooden wheel. Back in the days of the Hindenburg disaster, all zeppelins floated thanks to hydrogen gas, which was extremely flammable.
Today's blimps achieve buoyancy thanks to 100-percent helium, which is not flammable.
Safety is a priority, and the crew's dedication is never in question, but it does have its limits. When asked what music would mostly likely be heard in this blimp, Chandler admits it wouldn't be Led Zeppelin.
"No. I like Zeppelin a lot, but it's a loaded question, I'm a Van Halen guy I think."
Then again, it's all good music when you're floating around in a blimp.