SAN FRANCISCO — The accident occurred in the late morning in San Francisco, but in Seoul it was 3:37 a.m.
"Fatigue is there. It is a factor," said Kevin Hiatt, a former Delta Air Lines chief international pilot. "At the end of a 10-hour flight, regardless of whether you have had a two-hour nap or not, it has been a long flight."
The two teenagers killed in the crash were close friends and top students.
Wang Linjia showed talent in physics and calligraphy; Ye Mengyuan was a champion gymnast who excelled in literature. Both were part of a trend among affluent Chinese families willing to spend thousands of dollars to send their children to the U.S. for a few weeks in the summer to practice English and hopefully boost their chances of attending a U.S. college — considered better than China's alternatives by many Chinese families.
The girls posted their last messages on their microblog accounts Thursday and Friday. The last posting from Wang said simply, "Go."