Warning system helped pilots avoid mid-air collision

GATINEAU, QC, July 18, 2013 /CNW/ - The Transportation Safety Board today released its investigation report (A12O0030) into a 2012 risk of collision between two small jets near London, Ontario.

On 8 March 2012, a Cessna Citation X operated by XO Jet was flying eastbound from San Jose, California, to Bedford, Massachusetts. At the same time, a Gulfstream V operated by Executive Jet Management was flying westbound from Windsor Locks, Connecticut, to San Francisco, California, on the same airway and flight level. According to the TSB report, the conflicting flightpaths meant the required separation distance was lost, and the aircraft passed within one nautical mile (laterally) and 900 feet (vertically) of each other. The minimum required separation was five nautical miles (laterally) and 2000 feet (vertically).

The collision was averted after flight crews in both aircraft received warnings from their respective traffic alert and collision avoidance systems (TCAS).

Although there were no injuries and no damage to either aircraft, the TSB investigated to determine if there were safety deficiencies that could be identified. It was subsequently determined that an agreement between U.S. and Canadian control centres regarding aircraft at inappropriate altitudes was not followed, and that Canadian controllers had not immediately recognized the conflict. Possible explanations for this include an incomplete handover briefing and an unmarked flight-progress strip.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates marine, pipeline, railway and aviation transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.

SOURCE: Transportation Safety Board of Canada

For further information:

Transportation Safety Board of Canada
Media Relations

The TSB is online at www.tsb.gc.ca. Keep up to date through RSSTwitter @TSBCanada, YouTubeFlickr and our blog.

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