COMAIR SUING AIRPORT, FAA OVER DEADLY CRASH

All Headline News
October 14, 2006
By Nicole King

Lexington, KY (AHN) - Comair is suing the federal government and the Lexington airport over a plane crash in August that killed 49 people. The crash happened when a commuter plane took off from a runway that was too short.

The airline says it will pay settlements to the families of the victims, but wants the other two parties to be responsible as well. Comair is a subsidiary of Delta. Both companies filed for bankruptcy protection last year.

A week before the plan crash, the airport changed the taxi route that led to the 7,000-foot main runway that the plane should have used. The plane mistakenly took off from a 3,500-foot runway and then crashed in a field shortly after.

Comair claims the FAA failed to inspect and approve construction along the taxi route, as well as failed to properly staff the control tower with two air traffic controllers. There was only one on duty the night the plane took off.

At least 13 wrongful-death lawsuits have been filed over the crash. The pilot of the crash was killed, but rescue workers pulled the co-pilot from the wreckage who did survive. He was released from a hospital last week.