Remembering Delta 191

A memorial will be dedicated at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport on Monday morning to mark the 25th anniversary of the Aug. 2, 1985, crash of Delta Flight 191, which killed 135 people. The plane crashed at about 6 p.m. because of a microburst -– a violent downdraft from a thunderstorm into which the plane flew as it was landing at the airport. It was one of several wind shear-related crashes during that era and sparked a seven-year program to investigate microbursts and develop the improved radar and pilot training that has effectively eliminated such crashes, according to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

An article by Kathy Barnstorff of the NASA Langley Research Center recounts the work by NASA and several partners to solve the wind shear problem. The memorial dedication about two miles from the scene of the crash takes place at 9:30 a.m. CDT and will include an honor guard and remarks by the airport's chief executive, Jeff Fegan, according to The Dallas Morning News.

NTSB concluded the flight crew should have realized the danger and not flown into that cloud formation. Although the front of the plane was destroyed in the crash and ensuing fire, the tail section came to rest relatively intact. NTSB says 26 passengers and three cabin attendants survived.

"There are so many lessons that were learned across the aviation industry because of this," D/FW International Airport spokesman David Magana told Michael E. Young of the Morning News. "It was a truly significant event in so many ways that we thought it was appropriate to dedicate this memorial."

Posted by Jerry Laws on Aug 01, 2010