What can happen when bad weather diverts aircraft to a busy airport
An incident in the skies above Hong Kong last week almost resulted in a collision between a Cathay Pacific Airways Boeing 777 and a Dragonair Airbus A330. The two airlines confirmed yesterday that the two planes “lost separation distance” above Hong Kong International Airport. The Cathay Pacific airliner was carrying 317 passengers and crew from New York, the Dragonair aircraft 296 people from Kaoshiung. The near miss happened on 18 September as bad weather diverted nine Cathay flights to other airports.
The two planes entered Hong Kong airspace at the same time and at the same altitude. The planes’ Traffic Collision Avoidance Systems alerted the pilots of both aircraft to the danger when they came within one nautical mile (2,000 metres) of each other and the pilots took evasive action.
[pictured: Hong Kong International Airport in good weather]