A mid-air collision was averted Tuesday night in Bengaluru airspace after two IndiGo aircraft came within close range of each other, triggering the aircraft’s traffic collision avoidance system (TCAS). According to industry sources, the two planes – 6E779 (Coimbatore to Hyderabad) and 6E6505 (Bengaluru to Kochi) – were less than four miles apart when the alarm was triggered.
“The ATC asked one of the aircraft to climb to 36,000 feet and the other to climb to 28,000 feet. At around 27,000 feet both the aircraft came within the separation that activated the TCAS,” one of the sources said.
The TCAS, which is an ATC-independent aircraft collision avoidance system, monitors airspace around the airplane for other aircraft equipped with similar equipment. The system is mandated by International Civil Aviation Organization, to be equipped on all aircraft with a maximum take-off mass of over 5,700 kg or authorised to carry more than 19 passengers.
Confirming the incident, IndiGo said: “The TCAS-Resolution Advisory system was triggered on two of our aircraft operating Coimbatore-Hyderabad and Bangalore-Cochin routes respectively on July 10, 2018. Following normal procedure this has been reported to the regulator”.
Director General of Civil Aviation BS Bhullar is yet to respond on the incident.What is a midair collision?
A near midair collision is defined as an incident associated with the operation of an aircraft in which a possibility of collision occurs as a result of proximity of less than 500 feet to another aircraft, or a report is received from a pilot or a flight crew member stating that a collision hazard existed between two or more aircraft.