The Caribbean Airlines jetliner overran the runway at Guyana’s Cheddi Jagan International Airport, Timehri because of a “long landing” at high speed, well-placed sources said Monday.
The pilots were interviewed by officials of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Caribbean Airlines and American agencies.
Demerara Waves Online News (www.demwaves.com ) was told that the Boeing 737-800 might have touched down more than half way down the runway and travelling to fast to stop effectively. The runway is 7,500 feet long.
Officials said the plane also landed at approximately 90 knots instead of 80 knots Saturday morning around 1:25. Investiagtors noted that the speed might not have been a major consideration but the touch-down point was a key consideration in the plane overruning the ruway. Officials said there was light rain and visibility was eight kilometers. The pilot has 25 years experience.
Investigators are now expected to corroborate the pilots’ account when they download contents of the Flight Data Recorder and the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder.
The recorders left Guyana around 6 PM for the Washington-based National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), at the request of the GCAA which is spearheading the probe.
None of the 162 passengers and crew was killed. One person suffered a fractured leg and another concussion, while the others sustaained bruises and hits about their bodies.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Prime Minister, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, who visited Guyana hours after the incident, said she expected the results of the probe to be made available soon so that authorities would be able to avoid future incidents.
Caribbean Airlines is owned by Trinidad and Tobago. A senior government official, who had accompanied the Trinidad and Tobago leader here, noted that the pilot did his best in the circumstances.
The NTSB said it designated Bob Benzon as the U.S. Accredited Representative. He is leading the U.S. team, which includes seven NTSB staff with expertise in operations, meteorology, airworthiness, survival factors, and aircraft performance. There are also representatives from the Federal Aviation Administration and the aircraft's manufacturer, Boeing.