Continental Airlines, and five individuals are back on trial over the catastrophic Air France Concorde crash that claimed 113 lives in June 2000.
In 2010 a judge convicted Continental and one of its engineers of manslaughter, four others were acquitted.
Continental demanded a second trial, granted by a judge. The 2010 process found a shard of titanium fell from a Continental DC10 onto the runway at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport.
The shard then punctured Concorde’s tyre causing it to explode and damage the plane’s fuel tank, which triggered the fatal explosion. This Continental denies.
Oliver Metzner the lawyer for Continental argued that: “Eighteen witnesses claim that Concorde caught fire before encountering this titanium strip and that after that the accident was inevitable. Moreover, the court was unable to explain how the plane caught fire”.
The legal team for Air France disagreed. Fernand Garnault claimed: “It is clear after having seen the dossier in detail, that the strip which fell from the Continental aircraft, is at the root of the accident and consequently, we oppose Continental’s version of events.”
The crash marked the end of the supersonic aircraft. Concorde was taken out of service shortly after the tragedy by both Air France and British Airways.