January 17, 1997 in Nation/World

Twa Crash Cause Still Mystery

Associated Press

A half-year after TWA Flight 800 exploded in the air, investigators say they still are unable to choose among three theories about what caused the disaster.

Friday marks six months since the explosion off the coast of Long Island that killed all 230 aboard the Paris-bound Boeing 747.

“All three theories, a bomb, a missile or mechanical failure, remain,” Jim Hall, chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, said Thursday.

“No physical evidence of a bomb or a missile has been found,” Hall told a meeting of the White House Commission on Aviation Safety and Security. But neither has evidence been found to rule them out.

The FBI has been sharing the investigation. Special agent Edwin Worthington told the commission that “thousands of leads have been followed, thousands of forensic tests have been conducted, none has unlocked the mystery” of the crash.

Vice President Al Gore asked for the review of the investigation at a meeting of the commission, which looks into ways to improve safety.

The commission was formed “because we know the terrible toll that airplane crashes take: On the victims, of course; on their families, their friends, their communities,” Gore said.

© Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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