NTSB Press Release

National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs


October 27, 2000

Washington, D.C -- The National Transportation Safety Board will hold a public hearing December 13 - 15, 2000, on the fatal crash of Alaska Airlines flight 261. The three-day hearing will start at 11:00 a.m. in the Safety Board's Boardroom and Conference Center in Washington, D.C. NTSB Member John Hammerschmidt will chair the hearing. The Safety Board is investigating the January 31, 2000 accident of Alaska Airlines flight 261 off the coast of California, near Port Hueneme, which claimed the lives of all 88 aboard.

"This hearing is a fact-gathering process," said Member Hammerschmidt. "Some of the issues to be discussed are: Alaska Airlines' maintenance organization and procedures, and its safety program; the design and service history of the MD-80 series aircraft longitudinal trim system, and FAA's certification and oversight of the ongoing airworthiness of that system; industry lubrication practices of the horizontal stabilizer jackscrew; and FAA's surveillance of Alaska Airlines."

The NTSB's new Board Room is located at 429 L'Enfant Plaza, SW, Washington, DC, 20594.

The public docket for this investigation will be opened on the first day of the hearing. Testimony at the hearing will be added to the factual record. No analysis of that information will be rendered by the Safety Board at the hearing.

A final report is expected to be issued sometime next year.

NTSB Office of Public Affairs: (202) 314-6100



The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged with determining the probable cause
of transportation accidents, promoting transportation safety, and assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.