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Assessment Summary Sheet

Contributory factor assessment for each assessed Airprox can be downloaded 

Number of Airprox reports assessed, and their ICAO Risk rating
Total Risk A Risk B Risk C Risk D Risk E
13 2 2 8 0 1
Assessed Airprox reports

Airprox

Aircraft 1 (Type)

Aircraft 2 (Type)

Airspace (Class)

ICAO

Risk

2021115

Spitfire (Civ FW)

Extra 200 (Civ FW)

London FIR (G)

C

2021118

Voyager (HQ Air Ops)

LS4 (Civ Gld)

Brize Norton CTR (D)

C

2021120

Socata TB10 (Civ FW)

PA28 (Civ FW)

Shoreham ATZ (G)

A

2021121

Prefect formation (HQ Air Trg)

C208 (Civ Comm)

London FIR (G)

C

Recommendation: That the MAA and CAA review conflicting Rules of the Air regulations with respect to formations of aircraft; specifically, Avoidance of Collisions within MAA RA2307 paragraph 9 and (UK) SERA.3210 Right-of-way.

2021122

EC155 (Civ Helo)

A109 (Civ Comm)

Silverstone ATZ

G

2021123

R44 (Civ Helo)

PA28 (Civ FW)

Gloucester ATZ (G)

C

2021124

Grob 109 (Civ FW)

C172 (Civ FW)

Lee-on-Solent ATZ (G)

B

2021125

H175 (Civ Comm)

AC11 (Civ FW)

London FIR (G)

E

2021126

Yak 52 (Civ FW)

PA28 (Civ FW)

London FIR (G)

B

2021127

P68 (Civ Comm)

Van’s RV9 (Civ FW)

Scottish FIR (G)

C

2021128

PA28(1) (Civ FW)

PA28(2) (Civ FW)

London FIR (G)

C

2021132

Defender (HQ Air Ops)

Spitfire (Civ FW)

London FIR (G)

C

2021135

Typhoon (HQ Air Ops)

Unk light-aircraft (Unknown)

Leuchars ATZ (G)

C

 

Consolidated Drone/Balloon/Model/Unknown Object Summary Sheet

Contributory factor assessment for each Drone/Balloon/Model/Unknown Object Airprox can be downloaded 

Number of Drone/Balloon/Model/Unknown Object reports, and their ICAO Risk rating
Total Risk A Risk B Risk C Risk D Risk E
6 1 3 1 0 1

Airprox

Number

Date

Time (UTC)

Aircraft

(Operator)

Object

Location[1]

Description

Altitude

Airspace

(Class)

Pilot/Controller Report

Reported Separation

Reported Risk

Comments/Risk Statement

ICAO

Risk

2021219

22 Oct 21

1458

A319

(CAT)

Drone

5435N 00545W

Newtownards

4800ft

Belfast/City CTA

(D)

The A319 pilot reports descending through 4800ft when they saw a large, 4-engine ‘commercial type’ drone directly ahead, at a range of 200-300m, moving right to left and below their level and which they were descending directly towards. The drone was positioned slightly left of the aircraft centreline, almost directly ahead and the crew were going to respond when the drone manoeuvred out of the way. However, the incident happened very quickly and it was felt that any avoiding action taken by the crew was likely to have been unsuccessful due to the position of the drone and aircraft inertia. Risk was briefly very high, but because the drone seemed to be flown in such a way as to avoid collision, the risk reduced. The crew reported the Airprox both by radio, at the time of the event, and after landing.

 

Reported Separation: 50ft V/30m H

Reported Risk of Collision: Very high

In the Board’s opinion the reported altitude and/or description of the object were sufficient to indicate that it could have been a drone.

 

Applicable Contributory Factors: 1, 2, 3, 4, 7

 

Risk: The Board considered that the pilot’s overall account of the incident portrayed a situation where safety had been much reduced below the norm to the extent that safety had not been assured.

B

2021221

23 Oct 21

1058

Saab 340

(CAT)

Unk Obj

5555N 00420W

Glasgow

1800ft

Glasgow CTR

(D)

The Saab 340 pilot reports conducting a standard radar-vectored ILS approach onto RW23 at Glasgow. Weather conditions were good, and they had broken-out below a high cloud base (4000ft). At 4.5 DME, whilst in the middle of actioning the landing checklist, both pilots perceived an object in their peripheral vision. Looking out, they saw what looked like a typical drone but with a smaller oval underslung load. It was about 25m directly ahead of them and 100ft above. Within 2sec, they had already passed below it without having time to react and without discerning any further details of the object. They continued the approach and reported the incident to Glasgow Tower.

 

Reported Separation: 100ft V/0m H

Reported Risk of Collision: High

 

The NATS Unit Investigation report states that [the Saab 340 pilot] reported an unknown object above them on final approach. At the time they were unsure as to what the object was. However, on an inbound flight later in the day they were informed that the aircraft ahead had observed a drone with some kind of underslung load. Upon hearing the description of the drone, the pilot of [the Saab 340] confirmed that was the object they had observed on final approach earlier in the day.

In the Board’s opinion the reported altitude and/or description of the object, coupled with the fact that the pilot was informed of another occurrence later that day, were such that there was doubt over the nature of the unknown object.

 

Applicable Contributory Factors: 4, 6

 

Risk: The Board considered that the pilot’s overall account of the incident portrayed a situation where safety had been much reduced below the norm to the extent that safety had not been assured.

B

2021222

23 Oct 21

1415

B738

(CAT)

Drone

5555N 00420W

3NM RW23 Glasgow

1200ft

Glasgow CTR

(D)

The B738 pilot reports that the PM saw the drone during the approach, the whiteness and apparent stillness made it easy to see. It was a large white drone, with no lights seen and an underslung load. Due to the large horizontal clearance from the drone and obvious lack of collision risk, the PM only reported the drone to the PF and ATC after touchdown.

 

Reported Separation: 0ft V/ 1NM H

Reported Risk of Collision: None

In the Board’s opinion the reported altitude and/or description of the object were sufficient to indicate that it could have been a drone.

 

Applicable Contributory Factors: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

 

Risk: The Board considered that the pilot’s overall account of the incident portrayed a situation where although safety had been reduced, there had been no risk of collision.

C

2021224

26 Oct 21

1925

 

A320

(CAT)

Drone

5439N 00549W

3NM NE Belfast City

1000ft

Belfast/City CTR

(D)

The A320 pilot reports that the aircraft was fully established on the RW22 ILS. Weather conditions were good VMC below cloud, with a gusty SW wind. ATC informed the crew of a police helicopter operating to the south of the approach at low level. This was identified visually and on TCAS. The Captain was PF and was manually flying the aircraft. At approximately 1000ft amsl (3NM), both crew members saw an object approach the aircraft on what appeared to be a reciprocal track. The PM was able to identify the object as a drone of reasonable size. Guesstimating, the crew believed the drone to pass slightly below, but almost level with the aircraft, down the RHS by approximately 30ft. No impact was felt or heard and a scan of the engine instruments and other aircraft systems was briefly completed. The Captain was satisfied that no contact with the drone had occurred and approach and landing was completed normally. ATC was briefly notified whilst still on the approach, and a more detailed description of events was passed on to the Tower controller after landing.

 

Reported Separation: 10ft V/ 10m H

Reported Risk of Collision: Medium

 

The Belfast City Controller reports the following timeline:

1925: [A320 C/S] reports drone 50ft below at 1000ft 3 mile final RW22. A320 lands safely.

1926: Police helicopter was operating on radar frequency and was requested to investigate the area.

1927: Airfield Ops reports visual with the drone from the ground RW22 perimeter road. Reports that the drone was half mile towards final approach.

1932: 999 call made to request police presence on the ground to see if they could find the drone operator.

 

A Belfast Investigation reports that after the A320 pilot reported the drone to ATC, the Airfield operative in a vehicle was asked to go to the RW22 threshold to look for the drone. The operative reported that (using binoculars) they were visual with both the Police helicopter in the area and two small green lights that were hovering about 0.5NM from the perimeter fence and about 1000ft high. They couldn’t see a size and colour because it was dark.

 

In the Board’s opinion the reported altitude and/or description of the object were sufficient to indicate that it could have been a drone.

 

Applicable Contributory Factors: 1, 2, 3, 4, 7

 

Risk: The Board considered that the pilot’s overall account of the incident portrayed a situation where providence had played a major part in the incident and/or a definite risk of collision had existed.

A

2021226

4 Nov 21

1145

H145

(HEMS)

Drone

5341N 00115W

Knottingley

1600ft

London FIR

(G)

The H145 pilot reports that, after completing an air ambulance task near Walden Stubbs with [another] Helimed, they lifted and climbed to 900ft whilst heading NW towards Leeds. Whilst in the vicinity of Knottingley, they noticed an aircraft in their 1 o’clock; they veered slightly left whilst trying to work out what it was. As it passed the aircraft, they realised that it was a black drone with white corners. They estimate that it passed 25-30m down their right-hand side at the same level in the direction that they had come from. They transmitted on the TAC radio to inform [the other] Helimed that it was heading in their direction. The remainder of the flight was uneventful.

 

Reported Separation: 0ft V/25-30m H

Reported Risk of Collision: High

In the Board’s opinion the reported altitude and/or description of the object were sufficient to indicate that it could have been a drone.

 

Applicable Contributory Factors: 1, 2, 4, 7

 

Risk: The Board considered that the pilot’s overall account of the incident portrayed a situation where safety had been much reduced below the norm to the extent that safety had not been assured.

B

2021229

5 Nov 21

2050

Type

EC135

(NPAS)

Unk Obj

5348N 00146W

Bradford

2200ft

London FIR

(G)

The EC135 pilot reports that while conducting police tasking over Bradford, the aircraft was being operated just inside the western edge of Leeds CTA (Class D) at 1900ft amsl with a clearance to operate not above 2000ft amsl. As the aircraft approached the tasking, a stationary red light was observed in the aircraft's two o'clock, estimated to be approximately 1-2NM away and around 200ft above their altitude. The tasking was abandoned, and the aircraft turned to tentatively investigate the source of the light which was presumed to be some form of UAV. A wide right-hand turn was commenced around the object and the aircraft climbed with ATC permission to try and ascertain the exact altitude of the object. As this investigation took place, the lights on the object were extinguished and visual contact was lost. Clearly now the risk of collision was greatly increased so the aircraft was turned away and departed the area. Leeds ATC [was] informed, they confirmed that no aircraft had been operating near the location and having watched the wide right turn the pilot had conducted they opined that the potential UAV had been being operated just outside the edge of their Class D airspace. It is believed that it was at approximately 2200ft amsl, which would be around 1900ft agl in that location. No UAV activity was NOTAM’d. It was a very busy bonfire night in Bradford, so it is assumed that [the operator] was filming the fireworks using a UAV. They do not believe that a risk of collision existed here as they had sighted the object in good time and took care to avoid possible confliction, however, they had been asked by their organisation to submit this occurrence as an Airprox.

 

Reported Separation: 200ft V / 1NM H

Reported Risk of Collision: None

 

The Leeds Bradford Approach controller reports that the EC135 pilot reported a sighting of a drone at approximately 2200ft over Bradford. They then stated they were going looking for the drone but thought that it had since turned out its lights. They reported that they could no longer see the drone and that they would file a report. The Approach controller acknowledged this on the radio; nothing was showing on the radar screen.

In the Board’s opinion the reported altitude and/or description of the object were such that they were unable to determine the nature of the unknown object. The Board discussed whether this may have been a drone, but the lack of detailed description, coupled with the date of occurrence (Bonfire night) cast sufficient doubt as to the nature of the object.

 

Applicable Contributory Factors: 4

 

Risk: The Board considered that the pilot’s overall account of the incident portrayed a situation where normal procedures and/or safety standards had applied.

E

 

[1] Latitude and Longitude are usually only estimates that are based on the reported time of occurrence mapped against any available radar data for the aircraft’s position at that time. Because such reported times may be inaccurate, the associated latitudes and longitudes should therefore not be relied upon as precise locations of the event.

 

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