A Continental flight heading from Newark to Buffalo crashed last night killing 50 people.  Also just before Christmas, a Continental flight had mechanical problems with its landing gear (and possibly the engine) in Denver, Colorado, veered off a runway and injured three dozen passengers.  That’s two crashes in two months for one airline!  I think it is fair to say that the Continental fleet is not being maintained as well as it should.

12 Comments »

  1. I have to say that your post is irresponsible. Did you research Continental’s crash record prior to their one incident in Denver? The incident that everyone survived? It’s impressive.

    As for the crash of Flight 3407? It was a Colgan Air Flight, Continental’s regional operator.Also, it sounds like last nights crash had something to do with the weather and not the fleet. Please do your research before you slander a company.

    #1 by sara — February 13, 2009 @ 12:08 pm

  2. I agree that until the NTSB has had a chance to review the crash in New York it is not known if *that* crash was due to mechanical failure. But why take your chances!? No other airline has had two crashes in such a short time period (apart from 9/11) and that should be enough for people to make up their minds on whether to support Continental.

    I realize that as a flight attendant for a major airline (probably for Continental) you don’t want people messing with your bread and butter, but you have to admit that two crashes in two months is really bad. Even if the second crash is weather related, you have to chalk some of it up to pilot judgment in flying into bad weather. Either way, Continental is losing faith in the eyes of the public right now. Sorry.

    Oh and one last thing, I did research the Continental crash record prior to the incident in December. I would say that 39 deaths in 13 years (1978 to 1991) is hardly a stellar performance. Here it is:

    – 1 March 1978; Continental Airlines DC10; Los Angeles, USA: The crew aborted the takeoff due to a ruptured tire and the aircraft ran off the runway. Two of the 184 passengers were killed.

    – 15 November 1987; Continental DC9-14; Denver, CO: The aircraft crashed shortly after takeoff in icy conditions. Three of the five crew members and 25 of the 77 passengers were killed.

    – 19 January 1988; Continental Express (Trans Colorado Airlines) Fairchild Metro III; Durango, CO: The aircraft struck trees and crashed during an approach in snowy conditions. Post- mortem toxicological examination showed that the captain had used cocaine prior to this flight. The safety board concluded that this use had adversely affected his ability to monitor the unstabilized approach flown by the copilot. Nine of the 17 occupants, including both flight crew members, were killed.

    – 11 September 1991; Continental Express Embraer Brasilia; Eagle Lake, TX: The airplane broke up in flight while descending from cruise. The horizontal stabilizer separated from the fuselage before ground impact. Examination revealed that the 47 screw fasteners that would have attached the upper surface of the leading edge assembly for the left side of the horizontal stabilizer were missing. They had been removed the night before during scheduled maintenance. All three crew members and 11 passengers were killed.

    #2 by Nugget — February 13, 2009 @ 12:40 pm

  3. Hi, I still have to disagree.Obviously, anytime someone is killed in an airplane crash it is tragic, and yes sometimes human error comes into play, however You can find the fatality numbers at http://www.airsafe.com/events/airlines

    There you will see that the only airline with a stellar record is South West and perhaps all airlines should find out what they are doing right. But you will also see that Continental does have an impressive record. United…562 fatalities since 1970 (excluding 911), American has had 857 (excluding 911)

    You get the point. Anyway, not trying to start a debate but yes, it is something I feel strongly about.

    #3 by sara — February 13, 2009 @ 1:58 pm

  4. Without going into detailed stats regarding airline safety records I believe that when it is your time it is your time. Why waste it condemming airlines safety records. You could drive your car and get killed. For that matter a twister could come down and kill you. One never knows when an accident is going to happen. It is an accidentb after all. It is beyond your control. What good would it do to stay in a bunker and never live? I would encourage anyone to live their life. Fly wherever, visit your favorite place,person, or thing. Don’t get caught up in the what if’s.

    #4 by J.J — February 16, 2009 @ 5:48 pm

  5. just dont eat peanuts.

    #5 by evan — February 18, 2009 @ 1:08 am

  6. Well you paint a very broad stroke but you lacking in facts other than what you see on the surface. First of all the accident in Denver is exactly that an accident (incident is the real term)! When an airline has an accident/incident it becomes the safest airline you can fly because it’s now under a microscope and everybody is on their P’s and Q’s! The NTSB will not have it’s findings on this “incident” for at least 9 months from the occurence date at a minimum. Now as for the Buffalo accident, this was actually a Continental Connection or Express carrier operating under the Continental umbrella, this was not a “Mainline Continental” flight. You know like FedEx, if your package comes to you overnight it’s a “FedEx Express” package but if it takes a few days it’s “FedEx Ground” but both operations are seperate completely but both under the “FedEx Umbrella.” Their employees cannot go and work between the different entities and their seniority doesn’t carry over but all people see is “FedEx!”So get your story straight and have the facts my friend! Leave the lousy remarks and lousy reporting to the major news agencies…they seem to do this very well by themselves without your help when it comes to an airplane related news story. Don’t trash one of the top US carriers because of incidents and accidents. All carriers have them (yes including Southwest in Chicago on Dec 8, 2005, Southwest Flight 1248) another great carrier who is not immune from accident and incidents! This is exactly how rumors and bad info gets put out into the world. If your an arm chair reporter stick to saying it’s your opinion and your not a NTSB investigator with all the answers less than 2 weeks after the accident happens but if you are…I have a few questions!

    Blkav8tor2003
    blkav8tor2003.blogspot.com

    #6 by Virgil Lovett — February 20, 2009 @ 4:20 pm

  7. Virgil, I have a question.

    Who shat in your Wheaties?

    #7 by Evan — February 20, 2009 @ 4:31 pm

  8. Nobody!!! lol I just don’t like when people are il-informed or don’t research something before expressing their opinion. Your opinion is only as good as the validity of your info to support your opinion. News agencies always seem to report very poorly anything aviation related good or bad! You would think with all the resources available to them they would do a much better job of reporting about a particular story. So my Wheaties are fine but good blogging usually has something to support it! I’m not trying to blast anyone but the airlines are having a tough enough time with bad management and high fuel prices. I’m a 22 year airline professional and have worked almost every position in the industry and was an investigator for a major carrier. So the writer should tell the story and ask if the airlines reputation is in jeopardy because the latest events, that’s all I’m saying!

    #8 by Virgil — February 20, 2009 @ 7:45 pm

  9. i tried changing the names on a ticket that is due to trael at the end of march. Due to a death in the family. They just don’t care and refuse to refund me back my money. Never ever fly CONTINENTAL

    #9 by Patty — March 17, 2009 @ 7:31 am

  10. Patty, my guess is this is a “cheap” fare you are trying to change, and probably purchased as a non-refundable ticket…meaning, no changes allowed. None of the airlines would change this ticket for you.

    #10 by Sara — March 17, 2009 @ 9:04 am

  11. some other airlines would allow you to change it and work with you… not continental.

    southwest is the best airline in the US, in terms of cost and customer service… they have the best management and the best labor force.. i wonder why? maybe it’s because they have an actual business model that makes actual money? hmmm

    sara, continental sucks and so do you… accept it. move on.

    #11 by evan — March 19, 2009 @ 6:41 pm

  12. My 17 year old son just flew Continental from Denver to Buffalo. It took him 19 hours. The first flight flew out of Denver, was losing fuel and returned to Denver. He waited 9 hours for the plane to be repaired and then flew to Newark where that plane was delayed for over 3 hours. Again for maintenance. (For that they gave him a 12 hour food voucher). Not remotely claiming to be an expert on airlines but he had 2 other flights during the extended trip he was on on two other airlines and they both went off without a hitch. Could just be a fluke for that day that Continental had 2 separate planes with maintenance issues that prevented their takeoff for extended periods of time. But since there are other choices, we’ll take them.

    #12 by KAREN — September 22, 2009 @ 2:06 pm

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