(CNN) — A “slip of the tongue” by an air traffic controller at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport saw two planes come inside 300 ft of crashing into one another final July, in response to a report launched Tuesday.
The incident on July 20, 2020, concerned a United Airlines Boeing 787 arriving from Newark, New Jersey, and an EasyJet Airbus A320 getting ready to take off en path to Malaga, Spain, in response to the report from the French air security investigation authority for civil aviation (BEA).
At the time, planes had been taking off from the 09R runway and touchdown on 09L, in response to the report, however the controller instructed the United Airlines airplane to land on 09R.
The crew sought to verify the change of runway utilizing the phrases “understand” and “sidestep for 9 right,” in response to the report.
However the controller didn’t verify the readback from the crew and proceeded to inform the EasyJet airplane to line up for takeoff from runway 09R.
At this level the United Airlines airplane was nonetheless lined as much as land on 09L so the crew began the maneuver, however after they checked once more the airplane was coming into land on their runway.
The EasyJet crew requested the controller why the United Airlines airplane was coming down on 09R and warned of a possible collision.
At this level the airplane was flying at an altitude of 300 ft, 1,300 meters from the tip of the runway. Both the EasyJet crew and the controller instructed the United Airlines crew to ascend as soon as extra, and the pilots aborted their touchdown.
By the time the planes crossed paths they had been separated by simply 300 ft.
The controller didn’t have a direct line of sight to the 09 runways as a result of the tools that faces of their route seemed to be damaged and she or he was working at a distinct display, in response to the report.
At the time of the incident the display dealing with in the direction of the 09 runways had been fastened and the controller was getting ready to change, which she was “worried” about, in response to the report.
She additionally instructed investigators she had been confused by a earlier request from a distinct airplane to land on runway 09R, which is longer than 09L, as a consequence of technical difficulties.
The BEA named a variety of contributing components to the incident, together with the truth that the controller was out of shape as a consequence of lowered air traffic in the course of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Investigators additionally stated that the United Airlines crew ought to have used the time period “confirm” as a substitute of the non-standard “understand.”
CNN has contacted Paris Charles de Gaulle airport for remark.
Correction: A earlier model of this story contained the incorrect date for the incident. It occurred July 20, 2020.