Preliminary Report: Legacy, 737 involved in midair

 - November 9, 2006, 8:43 AM

Boeing 737-8EH and Embraer EMB 135BJ Legacy 600, Peixoto Azevedo, Brazil, Sept. 29, 2006–Legacy N600XL, operated by ExcelAire, was involved in a midair collision with GOL Flight 1907, a Boeing 737, at about 37,000 feet. The Embraer landed at Cachimbo Air Base; none of the seven people aboard was injured. The 737, en route to Brasilia, crashed in the jungle and all six crew members and 149 passengers were killed.

The crew of the Legacy felt a jolt. The airplane lost stability and the autopilot disengaged, so the pilot took the controls and landed about 25 minutes after the collision. At one point soon after the accident, there was speculation by police that the Legacy could have been hit by debris. The business jet’s left winglet and stabilizer were damaged. The Amazon jungle where the 737 went down is so remote that rescue workers had to parachute in, and the site had to be cleared so helicopters could land.

The NTSB, Boeing and the FAA have sent teams to Brazil to assist in the accident investigation, which is being administered by Brazil’s Aeronautical Accident Prevention and Investigation Center.