Mon, Apr 16, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Flight diversions on M503 did not see incursions: CAA

SAFETY:Both carriers should submit reports on the incident, the Civil Aeronautics Administration said, adding that a communication mechanism is needed

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

Two passenger jets on Thursday last week diverted from the Chinese air routes that they were following to avoid bad weather systems, the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) said yesterday, adding that they did not enter Kinmen air space.

Flights KA805, operated by Cathay Dragon, and SQ825, operated by Singapore Airlines, were forced to divert from their planned routes and fly to the terminal approach control zone near Kinmen, the administration said.

Before the diversions, KA805 was operating on China’s southbound M503 route, while SQ825 was operating on China’s A470 route. Both air routes are used by flights connecting China’s Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta.

The agency said it would ask both carriers to submit comprehensive reports on the incident.

“According to international aviation rules, when civil carriers file requests to avoid inclement weather, air traffic controllers should assist them as much as possible to ensure flight safety, as long as such moves do not compromise aviation safety,” the agency said.

It also urged Beijing to quickly negotiate with Taiwan about the safety issues posed by China’s M503 route and W121, W122 and W123 extension routes, as the safety of flights on these routes could be affected by weather or other forces.

“We hope that negotiations could produce a mechanism of communication to avoid aviation accidents and ensure aviation safety,” the agency said.

China earlier this year opened the northbound route and the extension routes without consulting Taipei in advance. Taiwan has lodged a complaint with the International Civil Aviation Organization about the unilateral move.

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