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More than 50 flights canceled at Heathrow Friday

Jan. 18, 2008, London - More than 50 flights from Heathrow airport have been canceled early today in the continuing disruption caused by a crash landing.


January 18, 2008
By Drew McCarthy

Jan. 18, 2008, London – More than 50 flights from Heathrow airport have
been
canceled early today in the continuing disruption caused by a
crash landing.

Investigators are analyzing why a British Airways Boeing 777 made
a crunching touchdown short of the runway yesterday, ripping off the
plane's landing gear and severely damaging the two engines and
wings.

Nineteen injuries were reported among the 152 people aboard.

The crumpled aircraft remained at the end of one of Heathrow's two
runways this morning.

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British Airways says it expects to operate all of its long-haul
flights from Heathrow today and 90 percent of short-haul operations.

But officials are urging passengers to check in with their airlines
if they're planning to fly out of London.

"At this stage, we are working hard to restore near-normal
operations. However, it is extremely important that passengers due
to fly from Heathrow today contact their airline regarding the
status of their flight,'' airport owner BAA PLC said.

Britain's Air Accidents Investigation Branch was leading the
investigation of the incident.

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board also dispatched a
team to assist in the investigation.

David Gleave, chief safety investigator at Aviation Hazard
Analysis, a private company, said a bird strike or fuel shortage
would be among the possibilities investigators would consider.

"I think at the moment we have such good systems on board the
airplane for recording what's gone on, and the airplane is in a
pretty good state to be able to retrieve these recorders fairly
quickly, that they should have gotten the information out and be
analyzing it during today,'' Gleave told the BBC.

"So toward the end of today the investigators will start to have
some idea of what went wrong,'' though further examination may be
necessary, Gleave said.