Easyjet A320 at Basel on Jul 14th 2016, near collision with a drone

Last Update: December 28, 2016 / 23:14:55 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jul 14, 2016

Classification
Incident

Airline
Easyjet

Flight number
U2-1045

Aircraft Registration
G-EZPA

Aircraft Type
Airbus A320

ICAO Type Designator
A320

Airport ICAO Code
LFSB

An Easyjet Airbus A320-200, registration G-EZPA performing flight U2-1045 from Amsterdam (Netherlands) to Basel/Mulhouse (Switzerland/France) with 169 passengers and 6 crew, was on final ILS approach to Basel's runway 33 at about 20:38L (18:38Z), thunderstorms were to the left of the aircraft's path prompting the crew to request in case of a go around to climb out on runway heading instead of following the missed approach procedure turning left, which was approved by tower. About 30 seconds later the crew reported at their position ILS DME 3.4 (about 1080 feet AGL, 1960 feet MSL) a drone had just missed them, maybe by 50 meters (150 feet), the drone was slightly higher than the aircraft. The crew continued for a safe landing on runway 33 (without go around).

Just after touchdown tower advised the next departure, they were switching the active runway to 15 as the storm had passed.

On Aug 2nd 2016 Switzerland's SUST reported they opened an investigation into the airprox 3.4nm southsoutheast of the aerodrome describing the occurrence: "Close encounter with a drone during instrument approach for runway 33."

On Dec 28th 2016 the SUST released their final summary report releasing following conclusion:

Given that remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) can predominantly only be detected visually and not by collision warning devices, it is just a matter of time before a collision with a commercial aircraft at low altitude occurs, especially in light of the increasing number of drones in use. Above all, multicopters can cause considerable damage to an aircraft’s engine or even set it on fire due to their large size.

Targeted measures must therefore be implemented relentlessly and quickly. From the perspective of aviation safety, these specifically include measures that make it possible for unmanned aircraft to be detected, both by those directly affected and by third parties such as air traffic control (detect and avoid).

The SUST reported that the crew spotted the drone at about 2100 feet MSL, 3.4nm before the runway threshold, while on an ILS approach to Basel's runway 33. The pilots noticed the drone directly in their line of approach at a vertical distance of 10 meters (33 feet), the crew reported the drone was white with red lights, but had no time to react and perform an evasive maneouver. The crew did report the near collision to Basel tower.

Metars:
LFSB 142000Z VRB03KT 9999 FEW030 SCT040 BKN076 12/10 Q1024 NOSIG
LFSB 141930Z 24006KT 190V270 9999 FEW026 FEW030CB SCT040 BKN076 12/10 Q1023 NOSIG
LFSB 141900Z 24006KT 190V270 9999 -SHRA FEW026 FEW030CB BKN040 BKN076 12/11 Q1023 NOSIG
LFSB 141830Z 32010KT 9999 -SHRA SCT026 SCT030CB BKN040 12/09 Q1023 TEMPO 33015G25KT 4000 SHRA
LFSB 141800Z 30008KT 260V330 9999 SCT026 FEW030CB BKN040 BKN093 16/10 Q1022 TEMPO 33015G25KT 4000 SHRA
LFSB 141730Z 28005KT 230V310 9999 FEW035 FEW036CB SCT056 BKN093 17/09 Q1022 TEMPO 4000 SHRA
LFSB 141700Z 26008KT 230V290 9999 FEW035 FEW036CB SCT056 17/09 Q1021 NOSIG
LFSB 141630Z 28005KT 230V330 9999 SCT035 FEW036CB 18/09 Q1021 NOSIG
LFSB 141600Z 28005KT 220V360 9999 SCT035 FEW036CB 18/09 Q1021 NOSIG
LFSB 141530Z 26003KT 190V310 9999 FEW033 FEW035CB 17/09 Q1021 NOSIG
LFSB 141500Z VRB03KT 9999 FEW030 FEW033CB SCT096 17/08 Q1021 NOSIG
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jul 14, 2016

Classification
Incident

Airline
Easyjet

Flight number
U2-1045

Aircraft Registration
G-EZPA

Aircraft Type
Airbus A320

ICAO Type Designator
A320

Airport ICAO Code
LFSB

This article is published under license from Avherald.com. © of text by Avherald.com.
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