The flight crashed off the coast of Long Island in 1996, killing all 230 people on board in what is the third-deadliest aviation accident in U.S. history.
The official explanation given by the National Transportation Safety Board was that the crash was caused by a gas tank explosion, but the documentary gives 'solid proof' there was an external detonation, its co-producer said.
Many eye-witnesses claimed they had seen a streak of fire heading towards the plane before it crashed. Theories have suggested it was a missile strike from a terrorist or U.S. Navy vessel, and that the incident was subject to a government cover-up.
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The remains of the TWA Flight 800 from New York to Paris that exploded off Long Island, New York, reassembled from recovered wreckage
'Of course, everyone knows about the eyewitness statements, but we also have corroborating information from the radar data, and the radar data shows a(n) asymmetric explosion coming out of that plane - something that didn't happen in the official theory,' Tom Stalcup told CNN's New Day.He said many witnesses said that there was an external force and 'there's no evidence' of the explosion in the center wing tank. He added that none of the witnesses had been allowed to testify.
The producers have now submitted a petition signed by former investigators calling for the NTSB to reopen its investigation, based on the new evidence, Stalcup told CNN.
Among the whistle-blowers who worked on the investigation are Hank Hughes, a senior accident investigator, Bob Young, a TWA investigator, and Jim Speer, an accident investigator for the Airline Pilots Association.
Speaking out: Investigators who worked on the plane following the crash and co-producer Tom Stalcup, said there was no evidence that the explosion came from the wing tank
THE TRAGEDY OF TWA FLIGHT 800: WHAT ARE THE FACTS?
- TWA Fight 800 exploded in mid-air off the coast of Long Island, NY on July 17, 1996 - just 12 minutes after it took off for Paris
- All 230 people on board died, making it the third highest death toll from an aviation accident in U.S. territory in history
- Victims' death certificates have not been finalized because 'manner of death'
- During the investigation, the FBI took over the case because a criminal act was suspected
- Eyewitnesses reported seeing something go up quickly from the earth's surface right before the explosion
- Unexplained explosive residue was found throughout the wreckage
- Investigation concluded that the crash was probably caused by an electrical short circuit that ignited fuel vapors in the jet's center wing fuel tank
- But the case is 'pending inactive' rather than closed
'What [witnesses] told us doesn’t fit the mechanical failure scenario that was presented to the public at the end of our investigation.'
'The very next day [after the crash], the FBI came to speak to me and said, "you did not see that, you saw nothing",' one investigator said.
The documentary features interviews with these key members of the original investigation team, who now claim that their investigation was systematically undermined.
'This team of investigators who actually handled the wreckage and victims' bodies, prove that the officially proposed fuel-air explosion did not cause the crash,' said the film's producers.
'They also provide radar and forensic evidence proving that one or more ordinance explosions outside the aircraft caused the crash.'
The whistleblower team claim that at the time they were placed under a gag order by the NTSB, which they charged falsified the official conclusion of the cause of the crash, reports Fox News.
However, the statement said they did not speculate about the source or sources of any ordinance explosions.
The deadly crash occurred just 12 minutes after take-off from JFK International Airport on the flight bound for Paris, France.
Skeptic: Jim Speer, an accident investigator for the Airline Pilots Association who appears in the documentary, inspects damage after the crash. Right, part of the plane's wing is seen in the water off New York
Many conspiracy theories exist, the most common is that a missile strike from a terrorist or U.S. Navy vessel caused the crash, and that it was subject to a government cover-up
More than 600 people gave eye-witness accounts after seeing the plane crash and the majority described seeing a ‘rising streak of light’ moments before the crash' which many believed was a missile hitting the plane.
Many witnesses to the accident had seen a 'streak of light' that was usually described as ascending, moving to a point where a large fireball appeared, with several witnesses reporting that the fireball split in two as it descended toward the water.
There was intense public interest in these witness reports and much speculation that the reported streak of light was a missile that had struck TWA 800, causing the airplane to explode.
These witness accounts were a major reason for the initiation and duration of the FBI's criminal investigation.
'Revelations': The documentary, TWA FLIGHT 800, premieres on July 17 at 8PM ET on cable network EPIX
Tragedy: An image shows the reconstructed section of the plane. Although 90 percent of the aircraft was recovered, only the section around the central fuel tank was reconstructed
The NTSB told CNN that it was aware of the documentary and that the producers intend to file a petition to reopen the investigation.
'As required by NTSB regulation, a petition for reconsideration of board findings ... must be based on the discovery of NEW evidence or on a showing that the board's findings are erroneous,' NTSB spokeswoman Kelly Nantel said in a statement.
The documentary - TWA FLIGHT 800 – premieres on July 17, the anniversary of the crash, at 8PM ET on cable network EPIX.