The NTSB has asked the FAA to “explicitly prohibit” position and hold clearances at the intersections of active runways during low-visibility conditions and at night. While the recommendation is intended for all airports that have such a runway configuration, the Safety Board’s request stems from a loosely related incident on Jan. 25, 2002, at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport in Alaska.
Comair Flight 191
The NTSB has asked Congress to “convince the FAA of the need for immediate action” to prevent runway incursions. In an August 29 letter to 12 members of Congress, Safety Board chairman Carol Carmody and two Board members said the NTSB has issued 100 recommendations regarding runway incursions since 1983. The issue has been on the Safety Board’s list of “Most Wanted Safety Improvements” since 1990.
The NTSB blamed the crew of the Comair Bombardier regional jet that crashed at Lexington (Ky.) Blue Grass Airport on August 27 last year for failing to realize that they were taking off from the wrong runway. The crash killed 49 people; the first officer, the sole survivor, sustained serious injuries. Runway 26, the runway the crew mistakenly used, is only 3,500 feet long; Runway 22, the runway they were cleared to use, is 7,003 feet long.
The sole survivor of the crash of Comair Flight 5191 in Lexington, Ky., on August 27 last year has sued the FAA, Lexington Blue Grass Airport, chart maker Jeppesen and the supplier of the airport’s runway and taxiway lights, Avcon.
As a result of the Comair Flight 5191 crash in Lexington, Ky., the NTSB issued five safety recommendations to the FAA this week in an effort to mitigate airport surface operation errors.
James Polehinke, copilot and sole survivor of last year’s crash of Comair Flight 5191 on takeoff from the wrong runway at Blue Grass Airport, Lexington, Ky., filed a lawsuit last Friday against the U.S. government, the airport board, construction firm Tetra Tech, Jeppesen and airport employees.
When NTSB chairman Mark Rosenker asked two of his Safety Board compatriots–both erstwhile airline pilots–whether they ever took off into “a black hole,” both answered in the negative.
A Fayette County (Kentucky) Circuit Court judge ruled last month that Comair may not sue Lexington Blue Grass Airport for the crash of a Bombardier CRJ200 that killed 49 people on August 27 last year. Judge James Ishmael ruled that, as part of the county government, the airport enjoys sovereign immunity and therefore doesn’t carry legal responsibility in the case.
After a year of investigation, the NTSB on Thursday released its final report regarding the takeoff crash of Comair Flight 5191 at Blue Grass Airport in Lexington, Ky.
An April 10 safety recommendation issued by the NTSB calls for the FAA to revise its policies related to air traffic controller work schedules to account for disruptive sleep patterns and the accumulation of so-called sleep debt. It also recommends the institution of a training program to educate controllers and schedulers about the incidence and effect of fatigue on performance.