Sunday, July 06, 2008

USA Jet Airlines DC-9 freighter crash in Mexico

USA Jet AirlinesEarly today, a DC-9-15 freighter (registration number N199US) operated by Michigan-based on-demand carrier USA Jet Airlines has crashed at Saltillo, Mexico. Information about the accident is still sketchy at this time, however the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued an advisory minutes ago stating that an NTSB team is being dispatched to assist the Mexican authorities with the accident investigation.

In that advisory, the NTSB said that the aircraft crashed on approach to the Saltillo Airport, Saltillo, Mexico, at about 2:15 a.m. EDT, on July 6, 2008. According to the NTSB, there were two crew members aboard the cargo plane. The captain was killed and the first officer was critically injured. There are no reported injuries on the ground.

A Spanish language website, Vanguardia, has posted an article about the DC-9 crash in Saltillo, along with a photo of the accident aircraft. The freighter appears to have been completely destroyed, with its fuselage broken apart and burned. The Vanguardia article says that the aircraft crashed to the north of the airfield.

I will post updates about this accident here on Professional Pilot News when more information becomes available.

Condolences to the family, colleagues and friends of the captain, and best wishes to the first officer for a full and speedy recovery from his injuries.

UPDATE July 7, 2008: The identity of the captain who was killed in the USA Jet Airlines DC9 accident in Mexico has been confirmed by his brother. Captain Lon McIntosh, 46, of Middletown, Ohio, was fatally injured in the crash. His brother, Chris McIntosh, who was quoted today in a news report posted to WNWO NBC24, said that Captain McIntosh had worked for the carrier for abut 10 years.

Although some Mexican media reports named the first officer, he has not yet been officially identified by the company or his family. He is said to be critically injured with serious burns but a company spokesman said, "We hear the prognosis is good."

UPDATE July 8, 2008: For those who wish to express condolences to the family of the pilot who died in the accident in Mexico, here is a link to an online condolences book for Capt. Lon McIntosh.