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Air traffic controllers suspended over near-collision at Noi Bai airport

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – A team of air traffic controllers has been suspended from official duty pending an investigation into a near-collision between two aircraft at Noi Bai International Airport.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam has received a report on the incident from the Vietnam Air Traffic Management Corporation (VATM).

On June 24, Thai Air Asia Flight AIQ645 was preparing for takeoff on Runway 11R while Vietjet Flight VJC943 was taxiing on Runway 11L after landing. The two runways run in parallel.

During communications, the air traffic control tower instructed the Flight AIQ645 captain to stand still and wait for VJC943 to cross Runway 11R towards Taxiway S8 before proceeding to the aircraft stand.

However, the captain of AIQ645 misunderstood the instruction and let the plane proceed with takeoff. But the air traffic controllers took no action to prevent the jetliner from taking off. Consequently, AIQ645 was still airborne while VJC943 was taxiing through the runway used by AIQ645.

Even though the incident was later detected, the air traffic controllers took no immediate action to cope with the situation.

The incident occurred on June 24 but the northern aviation management company had not reported it to VATM until June 30.

According to the report submitted by the cabin crew of AIQ645, the two aircraft were 1,500 meters apart when the incident happened.

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