NTSB continues investigating near-miss between 2 planes at AUS in February

A memo obtained by KXAN sheds light on airport control staffing struggles in Austin.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Federal Aviation Administration has been looking into an incident involving two planes at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport that happened back in February.

In an initial statement, the FAA said preliminary information found FedEx Flight 1432 had been cleared to land on Runway 18-Left at AUS around 6:40 a.m. on a Saturday. That FedEx flight was cleared for its landing while the plane was still several miles from the airport.

Shortly before its expected landing, the controller cleared Southwest Flight 708 to depart from the same runway, per the FAA.

“The pilot of the FedEx airplane discontinued the landing and initiated a climb out,” FAA officials said in a statement. “The Southwest flight departed safely. The FAA is investigating the incident.”

The FedEx plane was a Boeing 767 cargo airplane model, while the Southwest Airlines flight was a Boeing 737 model.

On Wednesday, The National Transportation Safety Board tweeted out a link to the more than 3,000 page report investigating the incident.

Some of the topics discussed and covered included things like what the weather was like that day, what kind of training and experience the crews have, sleep schedules and how crews handle certain situations.

The NTSB went over everything they could do to determine what the error was that caused this near miss.

See the full report here, including full interviews with all parties involved.

According to an FAA report, 2022 saw more 1,700 close calls like the situation in Austin. That’s up from the year before. Majority of the instances were blamed on pilot error.

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