San Francisco: As per a report by Canadian air safety regulators that released on Thursday, an Air Canada plane came within 100 feet of two planes taxied to take off at San Francisco International Airport last week. The Air Canada plane was loaded with 140 passengers on board.
Official’s findings said this could have been one of the worst disasters in commercial aviation history. The Air Canada jet reportedly came within 100 feet of altitude from a collision with the first two planes, the star reports.
In a short report by Canada’s Transportation Safety Board said, AC759 was just 29 ft. to the side of the first plane on the taxiway, which U.S. authorities are still investigating.
“This was very close to a catastrophic event,” said John Cox, a safety consultant and retired airline pilot.
Flight 759, from Toronto to San Francisco, had been cleared to land on Runway 28R. Instead, the pilots, on a visual approach, inadvertently lined up for Taxiway C which runs parallel to the runway. The Air Canada jet had to abort the landing only after a pilot of one of the planes on the taxiway alerted air traffic control, as per the report.
There have been instances in the United States when landing planes hit another aircraft on the ground. Consultant Cox recalled incidents including several at Los Angeles International Airport, where the pilots of the landing plane could not see the other airplane.
“What is so unusual about this one is the airplanes could see each other and they still got this close,” Cox said.