HOUSTON (AP) — Flight controls that maneuver the tail wing were jammed when a private jet overran a runway in Houston and burst into flames, federal investigators said Wednesday.
The National Transportation Safety Board said in a statement that the controls were so jammed investigators couldn’t even move the adjustable flaps on the tail of the McDonnell Douglas MD-87 by hand. The agency said its investigation was continuing.
The jet was about to depart Houston Executive Airport for Boston on Oct. 19 when the flight crew aborted takeoff. The jet overran the end of the runway, crashed through a fence and burst into flames. Of the 23 passengers and crew, two were seriously injured and one had minor injuries.
The passengers were headed to Boston to attend an American League Championship Series game between the Houston Astros and the Red Sox, according to the plane’s owner, J. Alan Kent, who was on board.
Previously, the NTSB had revealed that the aircraft had not been flown since December, and investigators are looking into maintenance performed on the plane, federal authorities said Thursday.
The damaged control surfaces were similar to those found during an investigation of a Boeing MD-83 that crashed after a rejected takeoff on March 8, 2017.