For the past 18 years , the Boeing 777 has been known as one of the safest commercial planes in the air. The twin-engine wide-bodied jet had only one major incident before Saturday's crash in San Francisco.

The Seattle Times reports the only serious crash previously occurred on Jan. 17, 2008, when a British Airways 777 lost power and crashed short of the runway at London's Heathrow Airport.

A landing gear collapsed and a strut pierced the passenger floor. But apart from one broken leg there were no serious injuries.

Investigators found a buildup of ice in the fuel lines caused a power failure.

The Boeing company says that since entering service in June 1995, the long-range plane has flown about five million flights, accumulating more than 18 million flight hours.