Kolkata Airport: Glare On 30 Seconds From Crash

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Kolkata: The directorate general of civil aviation has ordered an inquiry into an incident when two flights to and from Kolkata came close to each other mid-air.

Two flights, one that took off from Kolkata and another that was heading to the city, came dangerously close to each other near the India-Bangladesh border on May 2.
The Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau under the civil aviation ministry is probing the incident of “airprox”.

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On the afternoon of May 2, IndiGo’s Calcutta-Agartala flight and Air Deccan’s Agartala-Calcutta flight had a vertical separation of less than the stipulated 1,000ft in Bangladesh’s airspace, a Calcutta airport official said on Friday.

The traffic collision avoidance system, installed in both aircraft, directed the pilots to increase the separating distance to avoid a disaster, the official said. The Air Deccan flight, which was about to land was descending and was at a height of 9,000ft. The IndiGo flight was gaining height and was at 8,300ft.

Officials said the flights were barely 15-35 seconds away from each other, which triggered a resolution advisory. The minimum vertical distance between two flights operating in Indian airspace is 1,000 feet. The two flights had come within 700 feet of each other, breaching the minimum separation clause.

The collision avoidance devices became active in both aircraft. While the Air Deccan plane climbed higher, the IndiGo aircraft dived till the 1,000ft separation was achieved.