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NTSB releases video outlining contributing factors in Birmingham UPS jet crash


BIRMINGHAM, Alabama — Federal officials released on online video Thursday outlining the factors that contributed to a UPS jet crashing on its approach to Birmingham's airport.

NTSB officials said the video was the first of its kind released to supplement an official crash report, and the agency plans to produce more in the future. Officials said the agency is hoping the videos are used as lessons for other professional pilots.

Officials have said crew failed to program a route management computer that would have guided their path to a runway that was shorter than the airport's main strip.

The main runway was closed for repairs when the jet made its flight to Birmingham from Kentucky on Aug. 14, 2013. The jet crashed into a hill near the airport. Capt. Cerea Beal Jr., 58, of Matthews, North Carolina, and First Officer Shanda Fanning, 37, of Lynchburg, Tennessee, died in the crash. No one on the ground was injured.

The crew's captain was fit for duty, but the first officer was fatigued and failed to adjust the flight plan, NTSB Human Performance Investigator Katherine Wilson said in the eight minute, 30 second video posted on YouTube. Officials said after failing to adjust the flight management program, the pilots missed signals from on-board devices warning them that their approach was off.

Officials have said the cargo jet also descended twice as fast as it should have, leaving the pilots little time to react before crashing less than a mile from the end of the runway.

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