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Teachers doused in jet fuel at California school sue Delta Air Lines

LOS ANGELES – Four Los Angeles-area schoolteachers who were doused with jet fuel dumped by a Delta Air Lines plane in the minutes before it made an emergency landing sued the airline on Friday (Jan 17), accusing the flight crew of negligence.

The plaintiffs say the pilot of the Delta Flight 89, which took off from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on Tuesday bound for Shanghai, failed to follow proper procedures in dumping thousands of pounds of fuel over a densely populated area at relatively low altitude.

A Delta spokesman declined to comment on the lawsuit, which was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court and seeks unspecified damages.

Dozens of children and teachers at Park Avenue Elementary School in suburban Cudahy were showered with jet fuel released by the plane as it circled back towards LAX minutes after reporting an engine problem following take-off.

The plane, carrying 167 passengers and crew, landed safely a short time later.

City officials in Cudahy, located 25km east of LAX, voiced outrage over the incident, in which at least 44 children and adults were treated for minor injuries.

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