28 August 2006

Safest Period in American Aviation Comes to End

Yesterday's Comair crash in Lexington ended an almost 5-year span with no commercial aviation disasters.

It seems clear at this point that the plane took off from the wrong runway, which was only half the length of the proper runway. The plane probably barely got airborne, if at all.

(Factoid: runways are designed to be long enough so that a plane can touch back down if the engine fails right at takeoff)

This strikes me as a very bizarre case of pilot error. For one thing, runways are clearly marked. For another, passenger jets usually have a 3-person crew. How can 3 pilots make the same error?

Perhaps we'll learn more if the lone survivor, the co-pilot, pulls through.

I'd be remiss if I didn't add a comment about how disgusting it was to see the local media cover this story like vultures. First prize goes to WLWT for taking 1 minute's worth of information and spreading it out over 4 hours. It will continue for days, of course, as TV crews frantically hunt friends and relatives to cry on camera.

No comments: