Cargo plane over­shoots Hal­i­fax run­way

North Bay Nugget - - NATIONAL NEWS - Michael Mac­don­ald

HAL­I­FAX — Fed­eral in­ves­ti­ga­tors have ar­rived in hal­i­fax to piece to­gether why a boe­ing 747 cargo plane skid­ded off an air­port run­way Wed­nes­day, leav­ing a trail of de­bris and send­ing four crew to hos­pi­tal.

The skylease Cargo jet over­shot run­way 14 just after 5 a.m. — the third se­ri­ous in­ci­dent at hal­i­fax stan­field In­ter­na­tional air­port in 15 years, fol­low­ing crashes in 2004 and 2015.

air­port spokes­woman Theresa rath spicer said Flight KKE 4854 was ar­riv­ing from Chicago in rainy con­di­tions, and sched­uled to be loaded with live lob­ster des­tined for China.

“It did land and then over­shot the run­way,” rath spicer said Wed­nes­day. “There were four crew on board at the time. They were re­moved from the air­craft and trans­ported to hos­pi­tal with what are de­scribed as mi­nor in­juries.”

she said it wasn’t clear what caused the ac­ci­dent.

Larry vance, an avi­a­tion an­a­lyst and ac­ci­dent in­ves­ti­ga­tor who spent 25 years with the Trans­porta­tion safety board of Canada, said it ap­pears the plane was land­ing with a strong tail­wind — some­thing he called an “im­me­di­ate red flag.”

“Nor­mally air­planes take off and land into the wind, that’s just a stan­dard pro­ce­dure that’s been go­ing on since the Wright broth­ers,” he said.

While it’s pos­si­ble to land with a tail­wind, vance said there would be lit­tle room for “de­vi­a­tions” such as a high air­speed or de­layed touch­down.

an­other po­ten­tial fac­tor could have been the rainy con­di­tions, he said. “It takes longer to stop on a wet run­way. It could be they got into a sit­u­a­tion we call hy­droplan­ing.”

a team of Trans­porta­tion safety board in­ves­ti­ga­tors ar­rived at the air­port Wed­nes­day to gather in­for­ma­tion and as­sess the in­ci­dent.

board spokesman Chris Krep­ski said in­ves­ti­ga­tors will ex­am­ine the air­craft and sur­round­ing ter­rain, in­ter­view pos­si­ble wit­nesses and crew mem­bers and take pos­ses­sion of the flight data recorders.

vance said in­ves­ti­ga­tors will ex­am­ine whether there were any me­chan­i­cal is­sues with the plane — in par­tic­u­lar with the break­ing sys­tem or re­verse thrusters.

It’s the third se­ri­ous in­ci­dent at stan­field in 15 years, but vance said hal­i­fax is a mod­ern, so­phis­ti­cated, well-equipped and well-run air­port.

of­fi­cials with skylease weren’t avail­able for com­ment Wed­nes­day.

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