DIA crash probe hails heroes | VailDaily.com

DIA crash probe hails heroes

Jeffrey Leib
The Denver Post

After a Continental Airlines jet exited a Denver International Airport runway last December and came to rest broken and on fire, panicked passengers bunched up so quickly at the rear exit door that flight attendant Pam Howard commanded them to “Back up!” until she could get the door open.

The roles that Continental’s flight attendants and two off-duty pilots who were sitting in the cabin played in the safe evacuation of more than 100 passengers from Flight 1404’s burning fuselage are detailed in recent air-safety investigation reports and other accounts.

All 115 passengers and crew members survived the Dec. 20 accident, though 37 were injured. The National Transportation Safety Board has yet to identify a probable cause of the crash.

Documents released so far suggest that strong crosswinds may have contributed to the captain’s inability to keep the plane on the runway during takeoff.

For more of this Denver Post story: http://www.denverpost.com/ci_12916128

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