Turbulence Caused Mexican Learjet 45 Crash

 - November 5, 2009, 10:44 AM

Mexican Dirección General de Aeronáutica Civil (DGAC) investigators on Tuesday said that turbulence from a Boeing 767-300 caused the Nov. 4, 2008 crash of a government Learjet 45 in Mexico City that killed Mexican Interior Secretary Juan Camillo Mourino and eight others on board, as well as six people on the ground. Both aircraft were on approach to Mexico City Benito Juarez International Airport when the accident occurred. According to lead investigator Gilberto Lopez, the Learjet 45 pilots’ failure to slow down in time reduced the business jet’s in-trail separation behind the airliner to less than adequate. Investigators said, the Learjet was 4.15 nm behind the 767 at the time of the accident, while standard flight procedures require separation of 5 nm. According to preliminary findings released last year, the Learjet’s voice recorder showed that the crew felt the turbulence just before the pilot “lost control” and revealed that the pilots’ voices reflected “anguish, impotence and frustration.” The final report confirmed the preliminary conclusions released just two weeks after the accident.