UPS Cargo Plane Crashes in Alabama, Pilot, Co-Pilot Killed
08/28/2013 // jcreiterlaw (Press Release) // Jonathan Reiter // (press release)
(Aviation accident news) A UPS cargo plane crashed near the airport runway in Birmingham, Alabama, in the pre-dawn hours of August 14, 2013, killing the pilot and co-pilot. The jet, an Airbus A300 was approaching the airport when it crashed, skidding across an empty field two hundred feet short of the runway. The nose section of the plane was still largely intact after it crashed and the belly of the plane was torn apart. The spilled contents of the belly of the plane, including UPS packages were strewn about a large area of the field.
A huge fire engulfed the plane, which burned for hours, despite the efforts of fire officials to douse the flames. Robert Sumwalt, a senior official of the National Transportation and Safety Board (NTSB) which investigates all airline crashes within the United States, stated that the investigators on the scene were unable to retrieve the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder due to the massive fire that was still smoldering and smoking 12 hours after the crash.
An eyewitness who lives several blocks from the crash site stated that he heard a loud explosion, which sounded like a “backfire”, prior to the plane going down in flames, and then heard 2-3 explosions once the plane was on the ground. An official from the Federal Aviation Agency stated that no distress calls or warnings had been received from the plane up until the point of the crash. The Airbus A300 is a wide body plane commonly used for regional flights by carriers such as UPS and FedEx, among others. Records show that this plane had a history of previous mechanical and structural issues, from 2006, in which it was reported that there were issues with the air data computer and a malfunction with the plane’s flap system. UPS refused comment on the cause of the crash, pending a full investigation by the NTSB.
Jonathan C. Reiter, an aviation accident attorney, with offices located in the Empire State Building, who has handled many aviation crash cases, stated the following regarding this crash, as follows: “The NTSB does a very thorough investigation, by examining the scene of the crash, inspecting what remains of the plane, speaking with eyewitnesses, and reviewing all other flight data, to determine the cause of the crash. This often takes months to get an NTSB report on the crash. The fact that at least one eyewitness heard an explosion while the plane was in the air, before crashing, is very significant to a possible cause of this crash.”
Mr. Reiter went on to discuss the significance of the absence of distress calls prior to the crash, as follows: “ The fact that there were no transmissions or communications from the pilot or the co-pilot prior to the crash means that the cause of this crash, may have been a sudden explosion of a part of the plane, which disabled the plane, sending these people to their tragic death. The NTSB will determine the cause of this plane crash following an investigation that will gather many different pieces of evidence. Until the NTSB reports is completed, we cannot know with any certainty what happened to cause this terrible tragedy”.
This information was brought to you by the Law Firm of Jonathan C. Reiter, a specialist in aviation accidents.
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