NTSB: Capt took command before NY landing accident

NEW YORK (AP) – The National Transportation Safety Board says the captain of a Southwest Airlines plane that landed on a collapsing nose gear at New York’s LaGuardia Airport took control from the first officer just 400 feet from the ground.

Private aviation experts say it’s unusual for a co-pilot or captain to take over a landing plane so close to the tarmac unless there are “profound” safety issues.

Sixteen people were injured in the July 22 hard landing.

The plane’s first officer has been with Dallas-based Southwest Airlines Inc. for a year and half, the captain for more than a dozen years. The flight from Nashville, Tenn., was their first trip together.

Investigators haven’t found any mechanical problems or malfunctions. An examination of the nose gear indicates it failed due to stress overload.

Southwest says the NTSB’s information is accurate.