Comair MEC Submits Analysis on Flight 5191 Accident to NTSB

On Aug. 27, 2006, Comair Flight 5191, a Canadair RJ headed for Atlanta, Ga., crashed on takeoff from Bluegrass Airport, Lexington, Ky. Of the three crew members and 47 passengers on board, 49 died and 1 received serious injuries. The subsequent investigation revealed that the airliner was cleared for takeoff on Runway 22, but the crew attempted to take off on Runway 26.

For 7 months, the Comair MEC Accident Investigation team, ALPA's Accident Investigation Board, and ALPA staff have worked alongside the National Transportation Safety Board to investigate the factors involved in this accident, analyze the data, and develop the factual record.

As part of the NTSB process, ALPA and other parties to the investigation have the opportunity to submit their analyses to the NTSB for consideration in the Board's final report. Last week, the Comair MEC team did just that by submitting a 128-page report.

ALPA's analysis does not make any statements of probable cause, but lists 32 findings relevant to the accident. In addition, the report offers 24 proposed safety recommendations to the NTSB for its consideration as it finalizes its investigative report. Areas of emphasis in the ALPA analysis are runway signage and marking, charting, airport construction and lighting, pilot and controller fatigue, NOTAMs, and ATC procedures. The report contains a detailed human factors analysis, which evaluates how the above-mentioned areas of emphasis played role in the accident.

The NTSB will now review the submissions of all parties as the Board moves toward concluding its report. The next major step in the NTSB's process will tentatively come in late July, when the Board members will assemble publicly to discuss and issue their final report.

Click here to view the report.