Birmingham crash second deadly UPS crash in 3 years

Birmingham crash second deadly UPS crash in 3 years

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Doug Lampe (Source: WAVE 3 Archives) Doug Lampe (Source: WAVE 3 Archives)
Cindy Lampe Cindy Lampe
Pastor Dave Stone Pastor Dave Stone

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Wednesday's UPS cargo plane crash comes nearly three years after UPS's last major incident, the crash of a Boeing 747 in Dubai. It was September 3, 2010 when that plane crashed just after takeoff. The flight was heading to Cologne, Germany when something went horribly wrong. Louisville UPS pilot Doug Lampe along with First Officer Matthew Bell of Florida were killed.

"It's just unbelievable to see how many people loved my husband," said Doug Lampe's widow, Cindy Lampe. Cindy Lampe spoke with WAVE 3 News shortly after the crash in 2010 at a fundraiser in honor of Doug.

[RELATED STORY: UPS pilot killed in crash is remembered by friends]

"All things considered, I think we are doing amazingly well," said Cindy Lampe. "It's through our faith, it's through the support of our friends and our family."

Doug was a family man and loved his faith. His Pastor Dave Stone from Southeast Christian Church spoke with WAVE 3 News on the one year anniversary of the crash.

"It's tough to describe what you feel like," said Stone. "It's one thing to hear it's a plane crash and you're sorry for that and you hurt for the loss of whoever it is. Then, when you hear it's somebody from this area and someone that you know, it's even more painful."

Painful also for the tight knit UPS family in Louisville. So many questions surrounded that tragedy, what lead to it and could have it been prevented?

An investigation later revealed that heavy smoke in the cabin made it impossible for Lampe and his co-pilot to see the controls of the plane. An accident report released by Dubai's government says the plane was carrying lithium batteries that weren't declared as hazardous cargo. Investigators determined those batteries started a fire in the cargo hold.

The crash ended up having a lasting effect on UPS operations. In July, UPS added fire resistant shipping containers to its jets - hoping to better protect its pilots. Those canisters are supposed to contain a fire reaching 1,200 degrees for up to four hours, preventing it from spreading and keeping pilots safe.

While we don't know what led to Wednesday's crash, UPS says the plane was carrying a variety of cargo.

"I think it's always important that whenever a tragedy like this occurs, to remember that life is short so we make the best of everyday we can," said Stone. "We live each day as if it could be our last so that we're ready to stand before God, if today is our last day."

After the crash in Dubai, UPS also announced it would equip its air fleet with "the Emergency Vision Assurance System" or EVAS. UPS became the first international air carrier to do so. EAVS helps pilots see through smoke by deploying a clear plastic bubble between the pilot and controls.

Copyright 2013 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.

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