Tiger A320 at Cairns on Jan 21st 2017, takeoff clearance cancelled due to wrong line up

Last Update: May 24, 2017 / 14:07:00 GMT/Zulu time

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Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jan 21, 2017

Classification
Incident

Flight number
TT-491

Aircraft Registration
VH-VNC

Aircraft Type
Airbus A320

ICAO Type Designator
A320

A Tiger Airways Australia Airbus A320-200, registration VH-VNC performing flight TT-491 from Cairns,QL to Brisbane,QL (Australia), was taxiing for departure from runway 33 and lined up the runway via taxiway B4. Tower observing the aircraft lining up via the wrong taxiway cancelled the takeoff clearance. The aircraft turned around on the runway, vacated the runway via taxiway B4, lined up runway 33 via taxiway B5, departed and continued to Brisbane for a safe landing without further incident.

Australia's TSB reported: "The flight crew lined the aircraft up for take-off from an incorrect taxiway intersection on the runway. Air traffic control alerted the flight crew who then backtracked the aircraft to the correct intersection prior to commencing take-off. As part of the investigation, the ATSB will interview the flight crew, review air traffic control communications and gather additional information." The occurrence was rated an incident and is being investigated, a report is estimated by May 2017.

Distance between taxiways B4 and B5 is about 410 meters/1345 feet, takeoff distance available runway 33 from B5 is about 2580 meters/8460 feet.

On May 24th 2017 the ATSB released their final report concluding the probable causes of the incident were:

- The first officer taxied the aircraft to the runway holding point B4 instead of B5 and may have been distracted by following the DHC-8, which taxied immediately ahead of them and took off from the runway intersection with taxiway B4.

- The captain was communicating with cabin crew and looking at the cabin video as the aircraft turned onto taxiway B4, which probably distracted them from verifying that they had turned into the correct taxiway.

- Neither member of the flight crew recalled seeing the B4 holding point sign (to the left of the aircraft) at any time.

- The first officer was under training and had only been to Cairns once previously, and runway 33 was not the usual runway in use. Lack of familiarity with runway 33 may have reduced the flight crew’s ability to detect the incorrect runway position when the aircraft was lined up on the runway.

- The air traffic controller saw the aircraft at the incorrect intersection after clearing it for take-off and alerted the crew.

- There was potential for a runway overrun in a rejected take-off situation if the aircraft had commenced the take-off run from the B4 intersection.

The ATSB released following safety message: "This incident highlights the importance of confirming that an aircraft is lined up for take-off at the correct intersection, or position on the runway, as well as the correct runway. Confirmation of runway heading is done by checking the aircraft’s magnetic heading with the runway direction once the aircraft is lined up on the runway. The intersection should be checked before the aircraft enters the runway."
Incident Facts

Date of incident
Jan 21, 2017

Classification
Incident

Flight number
TT-491

Aircraft Registration
VH-VNC

Aircraft Type
Airbus A320

ICAO Type Designator
A320

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