Swiss A333 at New York on Apr 17th 2024, rejected takeoff due to traffic on runway (two aircraft crossing runway)

Last Update: June 19, 2024 / 07:41:45 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Apr 17, 2024


Flight number

Aircraft Registration

Aircraft Type
Airbus A330-300

ICAO Type Designator

A Swiss International Airlines Airbus A330-300, registration HB-JHD performing flight LX-17 from New York JFK,NY (USA) to Zurich (Switzerland), was cleared for takeoff from runway 04L and was in the initial stages of the takeoff run when three aircraft went past the hold short lines and entered the runway to cross it. The Swiss crew rejected takeoff at low speed (about 40 knots over ground) advising ATC they had rejected their takeoff because of traffic on the runway. ATC acknowledged, queried the crew whether they wanted to return to the departure point and instructed the aircraft to vacate the runway and taxi to the holding point. The aircraft departed about 15 minutes after the rejected takeoff.

The three aircraft crossing runway 04L, Delta Airlines Boeing 767-400 registration N838MH performing flight DL-29 from Nice (France), Delta Airlines Bombardier C-Series CS-300 registration N104DU performing flight DL-420 from Dallas Ft. Worth,TX (USA) and American Airlines Boing 737-8 MAX registration N342RX performing flight AA-2246 from Dallas Ft. Worth, had landed on runway 04R and had been cleared to cross runway 04L by the tower controller 04R about 40 seconds prior to LX-17 receiving their takeoff clearance.

According to ADS-B Data DL-420 was still on the eastern parallel taxiway to 04L when LX-17 began and rejected their takeoff, DL-29 was just reaching the western edge of the runway when LX-17 rejected takeoff and AA-2246 was just crossing the runway center line when LX-17 rejected takeoff.

On both tower frequencies there were no instructions to stop, cancel the crossing clearance or abort takeoff. Both controllers continued duties.

On May 1st 2024 Switzerland's SUST reported: "On April 17, 2024, at approximately 16:46 local time (20:46 UTC), surface event occurred at JFK Airport when the Local 1 controller cleared Swiss International Air Line SWR17K, an Airbus A333, registration HB-JHD, for takeoff on Runway 04L while four aircraft were instructed to cross the runway downfield by the Local 2 controller. The A333 reached 50 knots and was 800 feet down the runway when the pilot aborted the takeoff. The closest proximity was approximately 4,600 feet with the first crossing aircraft. Remarks: The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has opened an investigation."

On Jun 19th 2024 the NTSB released their preliminary report stating (editorial note: The 4th aircraft mentioned by the NTSB, the Embraer 175, was already beyond and clear of the runway after its crossing when LX-17 began moving according to ADS-B data):

On April 17, 2024, about 1646 eastern daylight time (EDT), Swiss Air flight 17K, an Airbus A330-343, was involved in a runway incursion on runway 4L at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), Jamaica, New York, due to four other aircraft crossing runway 4L. The four crossing aircraft were Delta Airlines flight 29, a Boeing 767-432(ER), Delta Airlines flight 420, an Airbus A220-100, Repulic Airlines flight 5752, an Embraer E175LR and America Airlines flight 2246, a Boeing 737-MAX 8 resulting in Swiss Air flight 17K rejecting their take-off. There was no damage to the involved aircraft nor injuries to crew or passengers. Swiss Air flight 17K was a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 129schedule international passenger flight from JFK to Zurich Airport (ZRH), Zurich, Switzerland.

History of Flight

At the time of the incident, the air traffic control tower (ATCT) was staffed with 10 Certified Professional Controllers (CPC), two trainees and one Operational Supervisor (OS). Staffing was in accordance with the shift guidelines with six controllers on position in the tower cab during the event. The OS on duty was not present in the control cab during theincident and a Controller in Charge (CIC) was providing general oversight. There was no on the job training (OJT) in progress during the time of the incident.
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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Apr 17, 2024


Flight number

Aircraft Registration

Aircraft Type
Airbus A330-300

ICAO Type Designator

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