Thu, Nov 02, 2006
Ground Collision Follows Taxiway Landing Incident
Continental Airlines has had difficulty staying out of the news
this week, following two incidents at New Jersey's Newark
As Aero-News reported, the
airline has grounded the two pilots involved in Saturday's landing
faux pas at Newark. In a scary moment for all involved, a 757 with
160 passengers onboard landed on a parallel taxiway, instead of the
Newark airport officials tell the Associated Press all
navigation equipment and airport lighting was operating properly at
the time. Although federal investigators are looking into the
incident, so far the grounded pilots haven't been interviewed.
Authorities say the cockpit voice recorder won't help... because
Continental used the jet for a subsequent flight. Since the CVR
records on a continuous 30 minute loop, the tape of the incident
was recorded over on the follow-on flight.
A report in the New York Post also suggests tower personnel
didn't notice at first the plane had landed on the taxiway... and
the pilot didn't tell them. Controllers said a frightened port
authority employee working in a building just off the taxiway
called them, reporting a plane moving too fast on the taxiway. The
Post reports the crew fessed up when the tower supervisor radioed
them after that phone call.
Meanwhile, another incident at Newark caused a flight
cancellation -- at least for one of the jets involved. A Lufthansa
747 was taxiing out from the terminal when it brushed wingtips with
a Continental 757 that was being pulled by a tug.
No injuries were reported on Lufthansa flight 403 bound for
Frankfurt with over 300 aboard; the 757 was unoccupied. The
Lufthansa crew returned to the gate, where the passengers got to
bag drag to a new jet for the flight to Frankfurt.
Other Newark operations were unaffected by the incident,
according to a port authority spokesman. Again, authorities are
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