Separation between flights within regulatory requirements, says Indigo on near-miss incident

A day after AAI officials said that two IndiGo aircraft averted a mid-air collision, the airline said Friday both planes had “sufficient horizontal and vertical separation” within the regulatory requirements.

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) officials had said that possible collision of the two IndiGo aircraft was averted after the Air Traffic Control (ATC) tower in Kolkata instructed one plane to turn right and move away from the other one that had come at the same level.

The incident happened at the border airspace of India and Bangladesh, AAI officials said Thursday.

When contacted, AAI Regional Executive Director (Eastern Region) S P Yadav Friday said, “Our stand is the same”, referring to the incident.

“We have cross checked the flight data of the aircraft involved (6E-856 and 6E-571), both aircraft had sufficient horizontal and vertical separation within the regulatory requirements. Hence, the automated proximity warning was not even triggered,” IndiGo said in a statement Friday.

On Thursday, a senior AAI official at the Kolkata airport said, “both the aircraft, belonging to low cost carrier IndiGo, had come on the same level on Wednesday evening and posed a threat to both the aeroplanes”.

“One aircraft was going to Guwahati from Chennai and the other from Guwahati to Kolkata. The planes had come close to each other around 5.10 pm,” he had said.

At that time, the Kolkata-bound flight was at 36,000 feet in Bangladesh airspace and the other one at 35,000 feet in Indian airspace.

The Bangladesh ATC had asked the Kolkata-bound flight to descend to 35,000 ft and when the aircraft followed the order, it came close to the aircraft which was at 35,000 ft, the official had said.

An ATC official in Kolkata noticed it and immediately ordered the Chennai-Guwahati flight to make a right turn and move away from the path of the descending aircraft, averting a disaster, he had said.

(The story has been published from a wire feed without any modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)

First Published: Nov 02, 2018 23:01 IST

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