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NTSB investigates collision at Logan International

A Boeing 767 carrying 204 passengers struck the tail of a smaller plane carrying 74 passengers while the planes were taxiing at Logan International Airport. The airplane collision took both planes out of service and is being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The NTSB joined the investigation due to the severity of the damage to the aircraft. Only one person was taken to the hospital as a result of the incident.

The NTSB investigation will include analysis of the relevant data. They will interview the crew members of the planes, analyze cockpit recorders and flight data, review air traffic controller and ground radar recordings and inspect both planes. The planes were both under the supervision of air traffic controllers, as the accident happened on the taxiway. While not common, in the last 10 years there have been 10 or more collisions between larger passenger aircraft while taxiing.

The professionalism of pilots and air traffic controllers is on the 2011 Most Wanted list of the NTSB. This list is meant to draw attention to areas of transportation safety that are of particular concern. While no cause has yet been determined regarding this collision, such incidents call into question the operating procedures and best practices used in the airline industry. A preliminary report regarding this incident is expected sometime next week. A final determination of the cause of the accident is not expected for some time.

Source: Boston.com, "NTSB joins probe of Boston airport collision," Mark Pratt, 15 July, 2011

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