Nearly a week after the deadly crash landing of Asiana Flight 214, the cleanup of the San Francisco runway where the Boeing 777 hit the ground is finally underway.
The process of clearing the wreckage will be done partly with cranes and partly by hand, NTSB Chairman Debbie Hersman said at a press conference Thursday afternoon.
The runway, 28L, has been cleared, but debris is scattered around the area.
The fire-damaged remains of the 777 will be “very carefully” cut up and moved to a secure location for storage, Hersman said. Some important sections are being moved to an NTSB facility in Washington, D.C.
Fully repairing 28L means work on runway lights and the seawall, and ensuring that all the electrical systems are working properly. The FAA will make any necessary repairs to navigation systems, and test flights will precede the re-certification of the runway.
In a statement, San Francisco International (SFO) airport director John L. Martin said the priority is to open the runway “as quickly as possible.”
Since the accident, SFO has been operating with delays, due to the closed runway. According to FlightAware.com, inbound flights are currently arriving two and a half hours behind schedule.
Here’s how 28L looked before the work started:
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