William-Kate`s jet narrowly avoids crash at runway

Last Updated: Monday, February 13, 2012 - 00:06

London: Prince William and his wife Kate
narrowly missed a catastrophic crash while landing at Heathrow
as their plane avoided collision with another aircraft that
had not cleared a runway in time, a media report said on Sunday.

The British Airways jet carrying the Duke and Duchess of
Cambridge from Copenhagen was less than 200ft off the ground
and about to touch down when the captain was forced to take
emergency action to avoid ploughing into another aircraft on
the runway.

He put the plane into a steep climb then circled the
airport for several minutes while the landing strip was
cleared, the UK-based People`s online reported.

The royals and their fellow?passengers on the 162-seat
Airbus A320-200 all escaped the drama unhurt. But Kate
Middleton, who was returning from Denmark on one of her first
foreign royal trips, was deeply unsettled by the near miss.

"This really was a serious incident and would have been
terrifying for those on board. The aircraft ahead of them
hadn`t cleared the runway in time for the plane carrying the
Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to land," a source said.

"For anyone who didn`t know what was going on it would
have been extremely worrying," the source said.
"The pilot took the decision to ascend suddenly during the
approach and thankfully he was able to land safely," the
source added.

The incident on the aircraft happened on November 2 as
Kate, 30, and William, 29, flew home from Copenhagen. They had
been touring the emergency supply centre of the children`s
charity UNICEF.

British Airways last night admitted their pilot had been
forced into the delicate manoeuvre last November.

"Our crew were told by air traffic control to perform a
go-around, a perfectly standard operation with no safety
implications, because an aircraft from another airline hadn`t
fully cleared the runway," a spokesman said.

"Safety is always our priority and all our pilots are
fully trained to deal with procedures of this kind," the
spokesperson added.

PTI



First Published: Monday, February 13, 2012 - 00:06

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