Air Canada Jet Nearly Lands On Taxiway At San Francisco International Airport

An Air Canada plane avoided what could have been a tragic mistake when it nearly landed on the taxiway instead of the runway at the San Francisco International Airport on Friday.

In audio of the incident, the Air Canada pilot spoke to the control tower to double-check its landing site.

The state of the aircraft's and controller's equipment, and the design of the air space will also be under review as officials try to determine how a flight from Toronto came to line up with a taxiway rather than the runway as it prepared to land, said Barry Wiszniowski, president of Aviation Safety Management Experts. The San Jose Mercury News reported that the control tower has forced the Airbus 320 Air Canada to go back and redo his approach, a manoeuvre rarely done in civil aviation. "He's on the taxiway", that pilot says. The pilot, however, inadvertently began descending towards one of the taxiways - where four airplanes laden with passengers and fuel sat waiting for permission to take off - according to the US Federal Aviation Administration.

The ATC informed the pilot that the runway was clear and that he was clear to land.

'Air Canada flew directly over us, ' another pilot says.

"Just want to confirm, this is Air Canada 759 we see some lights on the runway there".

They ended up landing the aircraft safely. "There is no one on 28R but you", the controller responds. When air traffic control realizes the plane is headed for the taxiway, it is directed to go around and approach again.

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"This is pretty huge".

"If you could imagine an Airbus colliding with four passenger aircraft wide bodies, full of fuel and passengers, then you can imagine how horrific this could have been", Captain Aimer said.
Many instances could go unreported, and many times they involve smaller planes at smaller airports, he said.

The FAA have launched an investigation.

There was no immediate information on how many people were on the Air Canada flight from Toronto.

In December 2015, an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 landed on a central taxiway at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

The SFO spokesman referred inquiries to the FAA, saying the airport had no comment on the event.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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