Second Time In Days, Plane Has To Abort Landing Because Another Plane Was On Mexico City Runway

This keeps happening at the Mexico City airport, described in the media as “panic over Mexico’s air safety” as Aeromexico flight 762 from Bogota had to abort its landing on Wednesday.

At around 8:25 p.m. (local time) the aircraft was in position to deploy the landing gear, but suddenly the aircraft rose again with all the power necessary in such cases. …[F]light 762 “made a go-around in compliance with national and international security protocols” because there was another plane on the runway that had been slow to leave the site.

It was only just Sunday when a Volaris flight from Mazatlan was cleared to land at Mexico City when another Volaris flight was cleared to take off on the same runway.

Mexico’s airspace navigation service director resigned over this past weekend’s Volaris incident. The Aeromexico incident seems more common if indeed it’s attributable to a slower than expected moving aircraft, and there don’t seem to be allegations that air traffic control handled the situation improperly.

Given genuine concerns over safety there’s going to be heightened concerns over every flight issue involving the airport – and that’s a good thing.

(HT: Dennis Y.)

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Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Hard to tell what’s more dangerous, security at the resorts or flying in/out of the country.

  2. Pilots should expect to make quick abortion decisions when landing in Mexico due to other aircraft taking a siesta on an active runway. Andele, andele.

  3. Normal aviation thing (go-around due to a aircraft being slow to clear the runway) happens. Media conflates it with a more serious incident (2 aircraft cleared to use the same runway at the same time) and freaks out. Gary posts yet another clickbait headline.

    Difference is one of these is the system working as intended; the other is a failure of the system.

  4. Retired ATC here. Two aircraft (the Volaris incident) were cleared to use the same runway at the same time. One was cleared for TO the other cleared to land. Hitting gaps (getting departing AC on their way between arrivals), is SOP at many airports around the world. Assuming MC ATC uses the FAA handbook, with two category 3 AC involved, to be legal, the departing AC would have to be at least 6000 feet down the runway and airborne BEFORE the arriving AC crosses the landing threshold. In the case of an arrival being slow to clear the runway, with another arrival being forced to go around, that could be the result of a number of things: insufficient spacing provided by approach control, a tower controller not being specific about which taxiway they wanted the first arrival to use and letting the AC roll out/taxi too far, or the following AC may have been on a visual approach/providing their own separation with the preceding AC and simply got too close. I saw every combination of these scenarios while I was working and was a passenger on an AC the last time I flew into Vegas and we got sent around. The Captain was pretty good natured about it, after we executed a missed approach/go around, he got on the PA and said not to feel too bad about it, the guy behind us got sent around too.

  5. Happens all the time here in the US. Sorry I don’t call the media each time I have to go around for traffic.

  6. Does Mexico follow US ATC procedure where planes can be cleared to land well before landing upon tuning to Tower frequency on the assumption that the runway will be clear or is Mexico more like Europe where ATC can only clear a plane to land when the runway is actually clear and usually issues a Continue command upon check in with the tower?

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