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Runway incursions at LAX drop significantly

The national figure has also declined, according to the FAA, which attributes the success to airfield improvements and better communication between pilots and air traffic controllers.

October 09, 2009|Dan Weikel

After years of effort, Los Angeles International Airport and other commercial airports across the country have continued to reduce runway incursions that can endanger planes taxiing to and from terminals, the Federal Aviation Administration announced Thursday.

At LAX, FAA figures show that the number of incursions has dropped from 26 in 2000 -- including six serious ones -- to eight this year, all of them minor. Nationally, the number of serious incursions has declined from 67 in 2000 to 12 this year.

Incursions happen when pilots fail to stop at hold lines on taxiways that lead to runways. Straying too far can lead to collisions with other planes.

"U.S. runways have never been safer," said FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt during a news conference. "These are big steps for us. We are doing the right things and getting the right result."

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dan.weikel@latimes.com

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