Air Canada in potentially lethal SFO near miss

US aviation authorities are investigating a near miss at a San Francisco airport after an Air Canada aircraft almost landed on a taxiway rather than the runway, according to reports.

The Air Canada Airbus A320 was cleared to land at a runway at San Francisco international airport on Friday and the pilot began descending toward one of the taxiways, where four aircraft were waiting to take off.

Audio recordings of the conversations between air traffic control and pilots, posted on the Live ATC website indicate that the Air Canada pilot asked if he was cleared to land and was told there were no other aircraft on the runway.

A flight crew member in one of the aircraft on the taxiway alerts the tower to the Air Canada aircraft’s trajectory and the pilot was immediately instructed to pull up, circle around and approach the landing again. “It looks like you were lined up for Charlie [Taxiway C] there,” the air traffic controller told the pilot. The taxiway sits parallel to the runway.

San Francisco International has runways that are fairly close together. Runways 28L and 28R are only a few feet apart, although 28L was not in service late on Friday when the incident took place.

The US National Transportation Safety Board on Tuesday joined the FAA in the investigation into the incident.

Read Just how close did Air Canada flight get to SFO planes in near-miss?

Posted in Airlines, News, Safety

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