An alleged slow start by a Jet Airways plane taking off with 142 passengers from Mumbai to Singapore on Wednesday night almost resulted in a collision with an arriving Air India aircraft scheduled to land on the same runway.
The alleged delay in the Jet flight's take-off could have turned fatal because air traffic control (ATC) had cleared an Air India flight from Riyadh to land on the same runway one minute after the Jet flight was cleared for take-off.
Worse, the Jet pilot did not follow the ATC's command to abort take-off and got airborne. As a result, the ATC made the AI flight abort landing at the last moment to avert a collision."The Jet pilot should have informed the ATC if he had started the take-off run late because he was aware that another aircraft was about to land on the same airstrip immediately. The pilot also ignored the ATC's command to abort take-off," said a senior DGCA official.
A Jet Airways spokesperson justified the pilot's decision, saying the aircraft had crossed the permissible speed to abort a take-off and was at a safe distance from the arriving aircraft.
But DGCA sources said the distance between the planes was less than the permitted three nautical miles.