Monday, Nov. 12, 2001 11:34 p.m. EST
Former NTSB Official Doubts Accident Caused Flight 587 Crash
Aviation expert and former National Transportation Safety Board
official Vernon Grose said late Monday that he's increasingly
skeptical that the crash of American Airlines Flight 587 was purely
"I am backing away from the ready idea that this is simply an
accident," Grose told Fox News Channel's John Scott.
The veteran air crash prober said that he questions the sequence in
which the plane broke up over Jamaica Bay before slamming into a
residential area in Rockaway, Queens.
"Photographs you've already shown tonight [indicate] the vertical
stabilizer of the aircraft with the American Airlines insignia right on
it [fell into] Jamaica Bay long before the engine falls off in Queens," he
Grose said that if the vertical stabilizer detached from Fight 587
over Jamaica Bay, which the plane traversed before plummeting to
the ground in Rockaway, it suggested that catastrophic engine
failure alone may not have caused the crash.
"No, I don't think that's the situation at all," he told FNC.
"The engine that came free, which apparently was the number 1 left
engine, crashed on land. That was well after the vertical stabilizer
was detached from the aircraft, and that tells me that somehow ...
the airplane was progressively disintegrating, not just losing an
engine and then diving into the ground."
"Earlier today I thought it was simply the loss of an engine that
caused this," Grose said. "But I'm not convinced now. ... I am
becoming more skeptical."