Comair Plane Took Off From Wrong Runway Monday August 28, 2006 1:01 AM LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - A commuter jet mistakenly trying to take off on a runway that was too short crashed into a field Sunday and burst into flames, killing 49 people and leaving the lone survivor - a co-pilot - in critical condition, federal investigators said. Preliminary flight data from Comair Flight 5191's black box recorders and the damage at the scene indicate the plane, a CRJ-100 regional jet, took off from the shortest runway at Lexington's Blue Grass Airport, National Transportation Safety Board member Debbie Hersman said. The 3,500-foot-long strip, unlit and barely half the length of the airport's main runway, is not intended for commercial flights. The twin-engine CRJ-100 would have needed 5,000 feet to fully get off the ground, aviation experts said. It wasn't immediately clear how the plane ended up on the shorter runway in the predawn darkness. There was a light rain Sunday, and the strip veers off at a V from the main runway, which had just been repaved last week. Latest story I read there was only one air traffic controller on duty and he decided to go about other duties in the tower when the aircraft took off so he never viewed the incident!!!! We are so sorry that only one controller was on duty at the time the airport authorities stated. Meanwhile 49 people are no more!!!