'Greatest aviation disaster in history' averted at last minute - RT America
Jul 12 2017
Aviation authorities in the United States are investigating a near miss at a San Francisco airport after an Air Canada plane nearly landed on a crowded taxiway rather than the runway.
"However, the pilot inadvertently lined up for Taxiway C, which runs parallel to the runway".
The Federal Aviation Administration is now investigating an incident that could have resulted in "the greatest aviation disaster in history", according to one expert.
The FAA is investigating how close the Air Canada jet got to the planes on the ground on taxiway C.
Audio recordings of the incident reveal confusion among the Air Canada pilots about lights on the runway and suggest the A320 came close to at least one aircraft on the taxiway. Flight patterns and overheard noise and traffic for communities surrounding the airport will be affected accordingly.
Control tower: Air Canada 759 confirmed cleared to land on 28R.
Curtis said it was impossible to know how often commercial pilots line up their landing for a taxiway instead of a runway because government databases only capture that if there is an accident or serious incident. Another unidentified voice then chimes in to say he's lined up on the taxiway, and the controller tells him to go around.
"If these facts are true, what happened could have been the biggest aviation disaster in history", said the pilot of United Airlines retired Ross Love. "It looks like you were lined up for Charlie [Taxiway C] there", the air traffic controller told the pilot.
Tower quickly tells the plane to "go around" and it peels off, narrowly avoiding a massive collision.
In June, US President Donald Trump announced his ambition to upgrade air traffic control which relies on radar and radio technology.
Thankfully, after the go-around, the Air Canada flight was able to land where it was supposed to successfully, despite TRYING TO LAND ON THE TAXIWAY MOMENTS BEFORE.
A United Airlines pilot said, "United One, Air Canada flew directly over us". "We are still investigating the circumstances".
"If you can imagine an Airbus colliding with four aircraft full of fuel and passengers, you can imagine how this would have been horrifying", he added.