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  1. #1
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    Thumbs up Evacuation of crashed Air France flight in Toronto takes under two mintues

    How bout this for amazing - from Yahoo!

    The evacuation of more than 300 people aboard an ill-fated Air France flight took less than two minutes, with a co-pilot the last to leave the flaming wreckage - a "textbook case" of how to deal with an airliner emergency, officials said Wednesday as the investigation into the dramatic crash of Flight 358 got underway in earnest.

    Three-quarters of the 309 passengers and crew who were aboard the plane when it skidded off a Pearson International Airport runway were able to escape the wreckage in the 52 seconds it took for emergency crews to arrive, said airport fire Chief Mike Figliola.

    "The evacuation was a minute and a half to two minutes maximum," Figiola told a news conference.

    "The crew did a great job, they're trained to get the people off. This is what they're trained to do and they did it perfect. It was a textbook case of getting the plane evacuated."

    The Airbus A-340's twin tail-mounted engines had just started to burn when Figiola arrived on the scene less than a minute after the crash.

    "I just saw lots of fire," he said. "It was a big fuel load, luggage, combustibles . . . I was probably 50 yards away from the aircraft. My face was burning; it was very intense."

    The A-340, never before involved in a crash in 13 years of commercial service, descended from a blackened, lightning-streaked sky Tuesday before skidding down a rain-slicked runway and toppling into a wooded ravine, its engines erupting in flames.

    Even more spectacular than the fiery end of Flight 358, which came at the height of rush hour Tuesday and within full view of Canada's busiest highway, was the fact that the crash claimed no lives, leaving just 43 of the 297 passengers and 12 crew members with little more than minor injuries.

    To ease traffic delays on nearby Highway 401, police were urging commuters to resist gawking at the broken body of the Airbus A-340, which remained slumped in a wooded area just metres from the highway, coated in fire-retardant foam, a wingtip jutting above the trees.

    Don Enns, a senior investigator with the federal Transportation Safety Board, said the probe into the cause of the crash would begin in earnest Wednesday.

    Once lingering hot spots were extinguished, officials were to go after the so-called "black boxes" - the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder - to learn the details of the moments before the plane skidded 200 metres off the runway, Enns said.

    Several key pieces of evidence would have been recorded, each of which would be transferred electronically to a lab in Ottawa, he added.

    "If there's no damage, it's just like an electronic transfer off of one computer to another," Enns said. The devices are designed to survive the shock of impact and searing heat typical of a plane crash, he added.

    "I would anticipate that they would probably survive, however, we have to wait and see."

    Canada will take the lead on the investigation, Enns said. Air France officials were on their way to Toronto and expected to arrive Wednesday afternoon.

    Police said they did not consider the probe of the crash a criminal investigation.

    "We're treating this event as an accident at the moment," said Peel Region police Sgt. Craig Platt. "There's certainly nothing at this time to indicate anything but that."

    Aviation experts have said extreme weather conditions at the time of the landing - high, unpredictable winds, driving rains and lightning - likely played a key role in the crash.

    Brian Lackey, vice-president of operations for the Greater Toronto Airports Authority, which manages the airport, said staff were struck by the severity of the storm as they watched it unfold through the windows.

    "As we were looking out the window we were commenting that storm was extremely severe and we hadn't seen one like that," he said.

    Asked to comment on reports from passengers that the pilot was forced to circle the airport after aborting an initial attempt to land, Lackey said that was still under examination.

    "We haven't reviewed the tapes from the tower yet," he said. "Normally if there are thunderstorms in the area, a pilot may decide to circle until it's safe to land."

    Air France officials, including chairman Jean-Cyril Spinetta, a medical team and a psychologist, were scheduled to arrive in Toronto on Wednesday after the crash to investigate and help ensure the continuing health of affected passengers
    Our greatest accomplishments cannot be behind us, because our destiny lies above us. - Matthew Mcconaughey - Interstellar

  2. #2
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    ZUBi is offline Valued Longtime Member (1971-2006)
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    all alive. amazing...

    how about also fresh news:

    Bomb kills 14 U.S. Marines in Iraq

    By Michael Georgy

    BAGHDAD (Reuters) - A roadside bomb tore through a U.S. assault vehicle in western Iraq on Wednesday, killing 14 American Marines and a civilian interpreter in the deadliest attack of its kind against U.S. forces since the war began.

    At least 1,800 U.S. troops have died in Iraq since March 2003...

    read more here:
    http://today.reuters.co.uk/news/news...KOC_0_IRAQ.xml

    Bush, Bin Laden, Hussein, Castro: SAME $HIT

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