WATCH: Planes nearly collide on Barcelona runway

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

BARCELONA — Incredible video shows two planes almost colliding on the runway in Barcelona.

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.

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

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 said 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.

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 efforts to reach anyone at the press office, through the switchboard and three direct lines, were unsuccessful after repeated attempts.

There was no immediate response from UTair.


  • Robert Gift

    There was sufficient distance.
    The crossing aircraft crew would not have crossed if not.
    But the Moscow pilots did abort their landing and went around. Not “managed to abort”.
    Last week I was almost killed by an Amtrak train. It arrived less than a minute after I crossed the track.

  • Robert Burns

    This is not as severe as it appears or was reported. It is not an uncommon situation and there are guidelines for aborting a landing. I experienced this several years ago on a Delta Airlines flight into DIA. Landed or crossing ground traffic is required to clear the active runway by a defined point in the final approach of the incoming aircraft. In our case, the arriving aircraft in front of us missed its requested high-speed turnoff and took additional time to clear the runway. I was seated at a window in the front cabin and could see us cross the runway threshold. As we cleared the threshold area, I could hear the sounds of the pilot changing the throttle positions and the aircraft rotated to a nose up pitch. We turned west and proceed high across downtown Denver to make another approach. It was all done very calmly without any sudden or discomforting maneuvers. The pilot in command makes the decision whether to “go around”. In our case, the ground traffic in front of us probably would have cleared the runway in time, but the pilot informed us that he decided to make a safe decision and go around.

Comments are closed.