Turkish Airlines Flight Makes Go-Around at Haneda Airport After Going Off Course; May Have Mixed Up Runways for Landing

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Haneda Airport in Tokyo

A Turkish Airlines plane descending toward Haneda Airport in Tokyo on Saturday evening veered off course to a different runway from the one instructed by the ground controller, according to sources.

Another flight was approaching the runway for landing at the time, and the Turkish flight was forced to make a go-around, aborting the landing to make another attempt, after being notified of their deviation by the air traffic controller.

On Monday, the Land, Infrastructure and Transport Ministry demanded that Turkish Airlines report details about the case and prevent similar incidents from occurring.

According to sources close to the ministry, Turkish Airlines flight 198, which flew from Istanbul to Haneda, was descending from the east over Tokyo Bay for a landing approach to the airport’s Runway B at about 7:15 p.m. on Saturday, following the directions of the air traffic controller.

However, the aircraft veered to the left at Urayasu, Chiba Prefecture, about six kilometers ahead of the correct position, and headed toward Runway D, which runs parallel to Runway B. The air traffic controller quickly noticed the mistake made by the descending flight 198, which was approaching at an altitude of 300 meters, and told the flight to make a go-around. The flight then ascended to make another landing approach. Another passenger plane landed on Runway D shortly afterwards, and the two flights were able to maintain a safe distance. Flight 198 landed at the airport about 25 minutes later without trouble.

It is believed that the pilot of the flight mixed up the runways after making visual contact.