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Business News/ News / India/  Alert woman pilot saves hundreds after air traffic controller sets Vistara flights on collision course at Delhi airport

Air traffic controllers at Delhi airport inadvertently set two Vistara flights on a collision course on Wednesday - avoiding tragedy at the last minute thanks to an alert pilot. The incident took place at Delhi airport as one flight was landing and the other taxing for take off. Combined, the aircraft had held around 300 passengers. 

According to the DGCA an ‘alert pilot in the aircraft crossing the runway’ had flagged the issue. She was later identified as Captain Sonu Gill of the Ahmedabad-Delhi flight. An NDTV report quoting sources adds that the two planes had been less than 2 km apart when the ATC was warned about the situation. Airport officials said that a major accident could have taken place if the flight taking off was not stopped at the right time.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation has since de-rostered the air traffic controller and launched an investigation. 

ALSO READ: DGCA de-rosters air traffic controller after Vi Delhi airport runway incursion

 Flight VT1926 from Ahmedabad to Delhi was instructed to cross runway 29R after landing on runway 29L on Wednesday morning. At the same time, the controller 'momentarily forgot' and permitted another plane to take off. Vistara VTI725 was also operating the flight from runway 29R.

“Momentarily, tower controller forgot this crossing and issued take off clearance to another Vistara flight VTI725 (Delhi–Bagdogra) from runway 29R. On realisation of the error based on input from VTI926, the tower controller instructed VTI725 to cancel take off," a senior DGCA official told PTI.

Earlier in the day a Pune-bound Vistara flight had returned to Delhi after adverse weather conditions resulted in a windshield crack. “As a precautionary step, the pilots decided to turn back and the aircraft landed safely at the IGI Airport in Delhi. An alternate aircraft has been immediately arranged, which will depart shortly," Hindustan Times quoted a spokesperson to report. 

(With inputs from agencies)

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Updated: 23 Aug 2023, 04:46 PM IST
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