NTSB Press Release

National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs


December 29, 2003

The National Transportation Safety Board will lead a team of U.S.-based investigators to assist the government of Benin in its investigation into the crash of a Boeing 727 on Christmas day that apparently resulted in the deaths of more than 100 passengers and crew.

NTSB Chairman Ellen Engleman Conners has designated Dennis Jones, a senior investigator for the NTSB, as the United States' Accredited Representative to the investigation. He will lead a team that includes investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration, Boeing Commercial Aircraft, and Pratt & Whitney Engines.

Under Annex 13 of the articles of the International Civil Aviation Organization, the United States - as country of manufacture for the aircraft and the engines - has been invited by the Benin government to assist its investigation into the crash, which reportedly occurred when the airliner was taking off for a flight from Cotonou to Lebanon.

The U.S. team is expected to arrive in the west African nation of Benin today.

NTSB Media Contact:
Terry N. Williams



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.