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NEW YORK - Airplane maker Airbus Industrie blamed American
Airlines in court papers for "improper" flight operations that it said caused
Flight 587 to crash in 2001, killing 265 people.
|The tail fin of American Airlines flight 587 is recovered from Jamaica Bay, New York in this 2001 file photo. (File Photo/AP)
The papers, filed this month in federal court in Manhattan, said the airline
"failed to operate the aircraft in the manner that was foreseeable and normal
or intended by Airbus."
"Nothing Airbus did or failed to do caused the accident or any harm or injury
to the plaintiffs," the court papers say, referring to the victims of the
An Airbus A300-600 crashed on Nov. 12, 2001, minutes after taking off for
the Dominican Republic, killing all 260 people aboard and five people on
the ground in Queens.
More than 200 legal suits from victims' families have since been filed against
American and Airbus.
American Airlines spokesman John Hotard told the New York Post, which reported
on the court papers Thursday, that Airbus' position was "ridiculous."
The National Transportation Safety Board is still examining why the plane's
rudder suddenly began swerving violently, causing the tail fin to break off
and the plane to crash.
At a Washington hearing last year, the NTSB presented evidence suggesting
the co-pilot moved the rudder back and forth after encountering turbulence
from a jet five miles ahead. But it is also investigating whether there was
a problem with the rudder itself.
It said it may reach some conclusions by this spring.