Guwahati: A Jet Airways flight with 134 passengers on board narrowly averted a mid-air collision on Thursday, triggering panic aboard, passengers said.
Jet Airways Flight No 9W 2280 from New Delhi to Guwahati abruptly lost control soon after take-off, leading to chaos inside.
The pilot announced that another plane was approaching from the opposite direction and was inside the “safe zone”.
“The pilot said the flight’s computer system automatically navigated the plane and moved away from the path of the approaching flight to avoid a mid-air collision,” Caushik Bezboruah Chief Executive Officer of News Live, a satellite TV channel from Guwahati, who was on the flight when the incident occured, told IANS.
Jet Airways issued a statement confirming the Jet flight, a Boeing 737 encountered rough air generated by another plane, a Boeing 747.
“Jet Airways flight 9W 2280 from Delhi to Guwahati-Agartala encountered rough air generated by a large Boeing 747 taking off at around 1122 hrs this morning at Indira Gandhi International Airport. The flight was uneventful, continued on its normal course and the aircraft landed safely at its destination in Gawahati at 1300 hrs,” the statement said.
Sources have told NDTV the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) was alerted about incident by Air Traffic Control (ATC). An enquiry has been ordered into the incident alongwith the airline and the relevant airport.
Jet Airways will be asked to do a detailed analysis of the incident and submit detailed report , the source said, adding that the “fact that two planes came so close to each other is a safety concern.”
“First the flight abruptly turned right and then began to plummet. We thought it would crash. There was chaos and people were screaming inside,” Mr Bezboruah said.
“I heard people crying, some praying on top of their voices. It was a chaotic situation for close to a minute before the pilot took control,” added Bhaskar Sharma, Director of News Live, who was also on the flight.
“No one was injured but I saw a woman with an infant frantically trying to reach her seat from the washroom when this incident took place. She didn’t manage to reach her seat and instead sat on the aisle,” added Mr Sharma.
Among those aboard the plane included Assam Congress president Bhubaneswar Kalita and Congress MP Rani Narah. “God is great. We had a near brush with death,” said Ms Narah. NDTV