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Columbia Accident Investigation Board Releases Final Report

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Old August 26th 03, 03:30 PM
Jacques van Oene
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Default Columbia Accident Investigation Board Releases Final Report

For Immediate Release
CAIB PA 40-03

Date: August 26, 2003

Contact: Laura Brown, 703-416-3532 or 281-467-8657

Columbia Accident Investigation Board Releases Final Report

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Columbia Accident Investigation Board today presented
its final report on the causes of the Feb. 1, 2003 Space Shuttle accident to
the White House, Congress and the National Aeronautics and Space

The CAIB report concludes that while NASA's present Space Shuttle is not
inherently unsafe, a number of mechanical fixes are required to make the
Shuttle safer in the short term. The report also concludes that NASA's
management system is unsafe to manage the shuttle system beyond the short
term and that the agency does not have a strong safety culture.

The Board determined that physical and organizational causes played an equal
role in the Columbia accident - that the NASA organizational culture had as
much to do with the accident as the foam that struck the Orbiter on ascent.
The report also notes other significant factors and observations that may
help prevent the next accident.

The Board crafted the report to serve as a framework for a national debate
about the future of human space flight, but suggests that it is in the
nation's interest to replace the Shuttle as soon as possible as the primary
means for transporting humans to and from Earth orbit.

The Board makes 29 recommendations in the 248-page final report, including
15 return-to-flight recommendations that should be implemented before the
Shuttle Program returns to flight.

The report, which consists of 11 chapters grouped into three main sections,
was the result of a seven-month-long investigation by the CAIB's 13 board
members, more than 120 investigators, 400 NASA and contractor employees, and
more than 25,000 searchers who recovered Columbia's debris.

Over the next several weeks, the Board expects to publish several additional
volumes containing technical documents cited in the report or referenced as
part of the investigation, as well as transcripts of the board's public

The report can be viewed on our website at: www.caib.us

Hard copies of the report or CDs can be obtained through NASA's Office of
Public Affairs at 202-358-1898.


Jacques :-)

Editor: www.spacepatches.info



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