A 72-year-old pilot in the UK just lately confused a motorway for a runway and by chance descended to round 300ft.
An investigation into the incident revealed that the pilot mistook the street lights on the A1 motorway for the lights on the touchdown strip in January 2022. He was finishing up his first solo flight as a part of a course educating would-be pilots to fly at night time.
In accordance with The Unbiased, the brand new pilot had simply 233 hours of flying expertise underneath his belt when his plane strayed south of Newcastle Worldwide Airport. He inadvertently allowed the plane to descend to 300ft as he looked for the runway.
“On realising he was decrease than meant, the pilot initiated a climb. Coincident with this, Newcastle ATC known as for the pilot to climb after they noticed the plane’s transponder Mode C altitude decreasing towards 500ft,” the investigation report learn.
It added that after the pilot was on a secure stage, he turned again towards the airfield and with assist from air site visitors management he managed to reorient his flight in direction of the meant runway. The inexperienced pilot then managed to securely land the Reims Cessna F172M Gentle plane.
After a “debrief and an extended floor transient on Newcastle options and radio procedures,” the pilot’s teacher cleared the pilot to proceed his night-flying coaching, the report acknowledged. “The pilot’s inadvertent descent highlights the elevated threat from distraction, on this case on the lookout for the runway lights, in conditions the place exterior visible cues are lowered,” it added.
The investigation report additionally learn that there have been no different passengers travelling onboard and nobody was injured throughout the incident.
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