Continental plane crash ends remarkable aviation safety streak

The fatal crash Thursday of a Continental Airlines (CAL) flight in Buffalo ended one of the more remarkable streaks in the history of modern aviation.

According to Bloomberg News, the accident "ended a stretch of more than two years without a fatality aboard a U.S. airline flight, the first such run of aviation safety since the dawn of the jet age in the 1950s, according to federal transportation officials."

Last month, Bush administration Transportation Secretary Mary Peters touted the statistic in a speech. One day later, a US Airways Group Inc. (NYSE: LCC) flight miraculously avoided tragedy when Captain Chesley B. "Sully" Sullenberger III made a textbook landing in New York's Hudson River. Federal officials suspect that the crash was caused by geese getting sucked into the engines.