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San Francisco's airport has nearly caused 3 of the worst disasters in aviation history all within the same year because of a terrifying flaw

Business Insider | Jan 12, 2018, 02.51AM IST

aeromexico

Edgard Garrido / Reuters

The FAA is investigating the incident.

  • An Aeromexico jet planned to land on a runway occupied by a commercial jet before air traffic controllers ordered the Aeromexico jet to abort its landing at San Francisco International Airport on Tuesday morning.
  • The jet was approved to land on an open runway, but it became misaligned as it flew closer to the airport.
  • This is the third time in the past six months a near-accident has been averted at the airport.
  • Some believe the incidents could have been avoided if a runway proposed over 10 years ago had been built.

An Aeromexico passenger jet intended to land on a runway occupied by a commercial jet before air traffic controllers ordered the Aeromexico jet to abort the landing, the San Jose Mercury News first reported. The incident marks the third time in the past six months that San Francisco International Airport has come close to experiencing a collision.

Aeromexico flight 668 was approved to land on an open runway at SFO on Tuesday morning, but as the aircraft approached the airport, air traffic controllers realized it was lined up to land on another runway that was occupied by a Virgin America Airbus A320 jet. They ordered the Aeromexico flight to delay its landing and circle back around. The flight was able to land safely.

"Aeromexico is investigating the events occurred at the San Francisco International Airport and informs that the safety of our passengers and operations was not compromised at any time," the company told Business Insider in a statement.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the incident, which marks the third time in six months a commercial flight has avoided a near-accident at San Francisco International Airport.

In July, an Air Canada jet almost landed on a taxiway occupied by four jets, and in October, another Air Canada jet landed after failing to respond to orders from air traffic control to abort the landing and remain in the air. During the latter incident, air traffic control was not sure if another aircraft would clear the runway by the time the Air Canada jet was ready to land.

Some believe the incidents could have been avoided if a new runway that was proposed over 10 years ago had been built. The proposal was rejected after opposition from environmental groups, according to the Mercury News.

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