Fire rig at 777 crash scene had no heat-sensing equipment

SAN FRANCISCO — A fire rig that ran over and killed a 16-year-old Asiana Airlines crash survivor was not equipped with heat-sensing equipment that might have detected her in its path, a newspaper reported Monday.

Fire officials have acknowledged the older-model engine that ran over Ye Meng Yuan did not have the forward-looking infrared technology, the San Francisco Chronicle said.

The technology measures heat given off by objects on the ground and is now required by the Federal Aviation Administration on all new aircraft rescue trucks. Other fire rigs at San Francisco International Airport have it, and three more rescue rigs at the airport are in the process of having it installed, Assistant Deputy Fire Chief Dale Carnes said.

He said he did not know if the technology would have prevented Ye’s death.

“That would be complete conjecture,” he said.

Yuan had survived the crash and was covered in fire retardant foam when the rig hit her while racing to extinguish flames on the plane, authorities have said. They believe she was on the ground when she was struck.

The heat-sensing equipment was developed to detect humans, said Ben Castellano, former acting manager of airport safety for the FAA.

“Had the person been alive — the foam has a cooling action, but the body would still have given off some ambient heat that could have been visible,” he told the newspaper.

San Mateo County Coroner Robert Foucrault has declined to go into detail on how he determined the teenager was alive before she was struck, but said there was internal hemorrhaging indicating her heart was still beating at the time.

More in Local News

Residents are helping turn Casino Road in a new direction

An initiative backed by a $700,000 grant goes to the community for solutions to the area’s challenges.

It’s hard to find a parking spot at Wallace Falls State Park

There’s a study under way on how to tackle that issue and others.

At long last, a church of his own

After years of filling in elsewhere, Hallack Greider is the new pastor at Maplewood Presbyterian.

Judge: Lawmakers’ emails, texts subject to public disclosure

News organizations had sued to challenge the Legislature’s claim that members were exempt.

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s top images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

Number of flu-related deaths in county continues to grow

Statewide, 86 people have died from the flu, most of whom were 65 or older.

2 names released from recent fatal crashes

Both men were killed earlier this month.

Man shot in confrontation with deputies under US 2 trestle

The man’s condition was not immediately available, nor were details about the incident.

With an immigrant’s help, kids reach out to Filipino children

Marysville students drew and sent portraits. Thanks to a video, they got to see the reaction.

Most Read