By Bay City News Service
A hearing before the National Transportation Safety Board on the crash of an Asiana Airlines flight at San Francisco International Airport last July that was set to begin today, has been postponed due to a snowstorm that has closed the federal government offices in the Washington D.C. area today.
According to the Office of Federal Management, all federal government offices located in the Washington D.C. area are closed today.
Due to the inclement weather and the government closure, the investigative hearing has been postponed until Wednesday, according to the National Transportation Safety Board.
The session at the NTSB's headquarters is part of the agency's ongoing investigation of the collision of Asiana Flight 214 with a seawall at the edge of the airport on July 6, according to NTSB spokesman Keith Holloway.
"It's a fact-gathering phase of the process," Holloway said. "The purpose is to gain more information from experts."
Holloway said the board's final report, which will include a statement on the probable cause of the accident and recommendations for actions to address the problems found, may be completed by the summer of 2014.
Three Chinese schoolgirls died in the crash and its aftermath and more than 180 other passengers were injured when the low-flying Boeing 777 struck a seawall bordering San Francisco Bay and the tail section was separated from the aircraft's fuselage.
The jet had taken off from Seoul, South Korea, where Asiana is based, and stopped at Shanghai before heading to San Francisco.
The two-dozen witnesses at the hearing will include representatives of Asiana, Boeing Co., the Federal Aviation Administration and the Korean government Office of Civil Aviation.
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