Jets That Go Bump In The Night

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What can scare the heck out of airport ground workers? How about a heavy jet departing a closed runway? Federal authorities are investigating the takeoff of a Federal Express cargo jet from a darkened, closed runway at New Jersey's Newark Liberty International Airport May 10. Authorities have not yet determined whether the incident was caused by the air traffic controllers, pilot error, or both. The Associated Press reported the A-310 came within 3,000 feet of a Port Authority crew working adjacent to the closed runway. The FAA continues its investigation and promises to eventually divulge the cause. This type of incident has made headlines before. In a March 28, 2001, speech by Carol Carmody, then acting chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, Carmody emphasized need to reduce the number of these types of incidents.