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65 incidents of airprox reported in last 3 yrs: Ajit Singh

December 12, 2012 17:52 IST

Sixty-five incidents of two aircraft coming into close proximity were reported in the last three years and some of them occurred when air traffic was being handled by trainee controllers, the Lok Sabha was informed on Wednesday.

"There were a total of 65 airprox reported during the last three years," Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said in a written reply.

The minister said investigations have found that the incidents occurred due to different reasons including failure of radar and other navigational aids, coordination issues and human error on the part of Air Traffic Control and pilots

"Some airprox occurred when traffic was handled by a trainee controller during his on-the-job training albeit under the supervision of an instructor. The instructor was late in taking over or did not correct the conflicting situation in time," Singh said.

An airprox is a situation where distance between two aircraft is such that their safety is compromised.     The minister said government has taken several measures to avoid recurrence of airprox which include modernisation of Air Traffic Control services, implementation of safety management systems at airports and creation of a separate directorate of air space and air traffic management in Directorate General of Civil Aviation.

Elaborating on corrective measures, he said Flight Duty Time Limitation for pilots has been revised and issued as a Civil Aviation Requirement by the DGCA.

The minister said airlines have been directed to avoid use of similar/confusing signs and 'corrective' training is given to pilots and ATCs besides amending training procedures.

He said modernised ATC services would include conflict warning in the system to assist ATC officers.

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