Friday 29 July 2016

Close call for a Jetstar and AirAsia flights

AIR ASIA A330-343 9M-XXP (CN 1481)

JETSTAR A320-232 VH-VFO (CN 5631)

An investigation has been launched into a close-call between two planes over the Gold Coast.
Jetstar pilots were forced to take evasive action over Coolangatta Airport last Thursday the 21st July, when an AirAsia plane veered dangerously close during takeoff.
The two aircraft came within 152m of each other, violating the minimum 305m gap required by Air Services Australia.
A Jetstar spokesman told the plane received clearance from air traffic control to descend when the alarms sounded.
“Our pilots took corrective action to restore the safe distance between the two aircraft,” he said.
“The flight continued onto the Gold Coast and landed without further incident.
It’s likely that most passengers would not have been aware of it.”

Jetstar’s Airbus A320-232 VH-VFO (CN 5631) was coming in from Avalon in Victoria, while the AirAsia Airbus A330-343  9M-XXS (CN 1533) was taking off for Auckland. Combined, the two planes are capable of carrying 550 passengers.
They were not on a direct collision course. Rather, Jetstar says the incident concerned the loss of vertical space between the two aircraft.
AirAsia told their pilots followed the flight path according to the heading and altitude provided by air traffic control.
“The crew responded to the resolution advisory by reducing the vertical speed according to flight safety procedures,” she said. “The aircraft took off safely.”
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau says both planes have a collision-avoidance system, which monitors the surrounding airspace and warns of possible risks. Pilots are expected to respond immediately when the alarm sounds.
“The crew of the A320 (conducted) a climb to increase separation,” it summarises on its website.
Both airlines are cooperating with the investigation.

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