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From the headlines

By Brian Williams, Anchor and managing editor

There is a strange and poignant sidebar to the ongoing hearings into the Colgan Air commuter prop plane crash in Buffalo this winter: you may have heard in our reporting the "sterile cockpit rule", meaning all conversation in the cockpit below 10,000 feet should be germane to the flight that is underway. The rule came about in large part, apparently, because of the crash that claimed the lives of three members of Steven Colbert's family back in 1974, as chronicled in Vanity Fair and the New York Times. 

Excerpt below from the July 17, 1975 New York Times report by Richard Witkin 
The stories we're preparing for the broadcast tonight are a diverse selection: from air safety to car dealers to food safety to Making A Difference, and we hope you can join us.