Skip to main content

Dramatic video shows 'near miss' at Barcelona airport

By CNN Staff
updated 4:55 AM EDT, Wed July 9, 2014
Aviation analyst Miles O'Brien says the planes were about half a mile apart at the time of the incident.
Aviation analyst Miles O'Brien says the planes were about half a mile apart at the time of the incident.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Video shows Boeing 767 of Russian airline UTair pulling up from approach as aircraft crosses its path
  • Barcelona aviation official says aircraft were not in danger but officials confirm investigation under way
  • Aviation analyst Miles O'Brien says air crew on ground should have checked their way was clear

(CNN) -- An apparent near miss between two aircraft that was captured on video at Barcelona Airport has prompted an investigation by Spanish aviation authorities.

The video shows a Boeing 767 belonging to Russian airline UTair pulling up from its landing approach as an Aerolineas Argentinas Airbus A340 taxis across its path.

FAA investigating a string of near misses

No one was injured in the incident and the UTair plane was able to circle round and make a safe landing five minutes later.

Russian jet dangerously buzzes US jet
FAA investigating Alaska near-miss

The video, shot on Saturday, had gained nearly two million YouTube hits by Monday.

Spain's airport authority, AENA, said the government's Committee on Civil Aviation Incidents and Accidents would look into the incident.

A Barcelona airport AENA spokeswoman told CNN that the UTair pilot had been cleared to land but exercised his authority to abort.

She said the Aerolineas Argentinas flight also had permission to taxi across the runway. She did not comment on the timing of its maneuver.

The spokeswoman said there had been no impact danger and the perspective of the video did not show that there was plenty of space between the two aircraft.

It was "not about a collision or a possible collision," she said, adding that neither airline had submitted a complaint over the incident.

CNN aviation analyst Miles O'Brien said that, according to plans of the airport, the two planes had been about half a mile apart at the time of the incident.

"That said, you see they had to perform a go-around and if you've ever been in an airliner that has to performed a go-around, it gets your attention," he said.

O'Brien said air crews on the ground should check to see if the flightpath is clear before crossing a runway as part of standard protocols.

"What we can say here is the system did ultimately work -- the last resort that is, but there was a series of mistakes... that led to this."

Aerolineas Argentinas in Madrid referred calls to its headquarters in Buenos Aires, where CNN's efforts to reach anyone at the press office, through the switchboard and three direct lines, were unsuccessful after repeated attempts.

In a statement, UTair said the pilot of its flight from Moscow to Barcelona had been following the instructions of Barcelona airport dispatchers.

"While lowering on a final approach track the commander found an obstacle on the runway (the aircraft of another airlines was crossing it)," it said.

"The aircraft commander took prompt decision on the implementation of standard operating procedure -- go-around flight maneuver.

"The maneuver was carried out in the normal mode, the landing was successful, none of the passengers was injured.

In this situation, the commander well judged and adequately assessed the situation, showing at the same time composure and professional excellence.

"According to international rules aircraft while performing approach has an absolute priority over all the aircraft located on the ground."

FAA: 2 jetliners get too close for comfort over Houston

Near miss at Newark airport spurs runway rules change, FAA says

Drone, jetliner nearly collided over Florida

CNN's Madrid Correspondent Al Goodman and Barry Neild in London contributed to this story

Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:32 AM EDT, Fri October 24, 2014
Berlin's Tegel airport
It's crowded and outdated, but Berlin's hexagon-shaped Tegel air hub has won a place in the city's heart.
updated 12:07 PM EDT, Mon October 20, 2014
Good news for air travelers passing through Manila: the city's international airport isn't quite as bad as it used to be.
updated 10:07 AM EDT, Mon October 20, 2014
The Mitsubishi Regional Jet, aka the MRJ, is Japan's first new commercial jet in over 50 years
updated 12:20 PM EDT, Thu October 9, 2014
Air racing is just as fast as NASCAR, IndyCars and Formula One. But the added vertical dimension seriously amps the action up.
updated 9:01 AM EDT, Mon October 13, 2014
Thomson Airways' face-to-face seating plans could help parents or deprive them of movie-watching marathons.
updated 9:11 AM EDT, Tue October 7, 2014
When it comes to air travel, courtesy and common sense are often the first two things to fly out the departure gates.
updated 4:39 AM EDT, Thu October 2, 2014
Around a dozen of the iconic B-17 bombers are still able to fly. But how comfortable is a flight in the 70-year-old plane?
updated 1:38 PM EDT, Fri October 31, 2014
This aging cargo work whale makes more than 60 flights each week, carrying parts for all of the Airbus programs.
updated 11:55 AM EDT, Wed September 17, 2014
From a three-room apartment to a Michelin-starred meal, many airlines are offering services you won't even get in some top hotels.
updated 10:46 AM EDT, Tue September 16, 2014
Details from an Airbus patent illustrating a virtual reality headset for air passengers.
Airbus patent proposes using special headsets to control in-flight sights, sounds and smells.
updated 10:43 AM EDT, Fri October 3, 2014
Bear on the tail and heart on the underside -- it's been a big week for makeovers in the world of aviation.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT