A Wizz Air A320 was within seconds of a 500Kmh head on collision with an Air Europa Express flight over Spain.
A Wizz Air Airbus A320-200, flight no W6-3763 from Craiova, Romania was flying at FL310, at around 110nm while on the way to its destination to the Spanish capital. This is before it was cleared to descend to FL300 on its approach.
Meanwhile, An Air Europa Express Embraer ERJ-195, flight UX-1084 from Venice, Italy was flying at FL290, at around 110nm on the exact same airway as the other aircraft. Additionally, it was operating right below the A320!
The death toll would have been truly horrific, hundreds would have perished but a sharp eyed air traffic control operator (ATC) noticed the A320 descending below its approved level, after a frantic call the plane was ordered immediately to climb once again.
After being cleared of conflict, both aircraft continued to Madrid for safe landings. The pair eventually landed at Madrid runway 18L without any further issues. The incident was reported in November last year but details have only just been released.
The dangers of our crowded skies
Depending on the time of day or time of year, there could be anywhere from 8,000 to 20,000 planes mid-flight at any given moment, according to Flightradar24, which keeps track of flights in real time. Last year another fatal collision was avoided when two Ryanair planes were ‘nearly involved in a mid-air crash over Spain’
Two Ryanair passenger planes almost crashed in mid-air over Spain last October, crash investigators have revealed. The planes were reportedly 400ft apart vertically during flights close to Pamplona in northern Spain in early October, a distance close enough to be considered a ‘near miss’. Flight crews avoided disaster by diverting the planes after alarms sounded in the cockpit, Spanish investigators said.
0ne of the Ryanair planes was travelling from the Spanish city of Santiago de Compostela to Palma de Majorca and the other was flying from Seville in southern Spain to the French city of Toulouse. The aircraft were a very close 2.4 miles apart while flying horizontally and a dangerously close 400ft apart vertically as they passed each other over northern Spain at around 2.30pm on October 2-2018.