Two IndiGo planes taking off from the Kempegowda International Airport on January 7 came close to colliding with each other mid-air while taking off. The flights involved in the incident were IndiGo 6E 455 bound for Kolkata and 6E 246 bound for Bhubaneswar.
According to reports from insiders close to the situation, the airport’s north and south runways are not used for simultaneous departures since planes taking off from the same distance can collide. Ahead of this, the parallel runway operation has been red-flagged.
Reports state that on the morning the north runway was being used for departures while the south runway was assigned for arrivals. The latter was then decided to be shut by the shift in charge. However, the information was not conveyed to the air traffic controller of the south tower.
Following that, the two planes were given permission to take off from the converging runways at the same time. This meant that the two planes were now headed in the same direction for a convergence. Fortunately, a radar controller noticed it and immediately intercepted it, alerting the plane.
The incident has renewed concerns about air traffic controller lapses as well as the AAI’s and IndiGo’s failure to report it to the DGCA. During routine surveillance, the incident came to light.