BOSTON (WHDH) - An investigation got underway Monday after a close call involving two planes at Logan Airport.
The Federal Aviation Administration in a statement said the incident happened shortly before 1 p.m. At the time, the FAA said, an air traffic controller told an American Airlines pilot to cancel a takeoff because a Spirit Airlines flight was close to a line on the runway where planes are supposed to stop.
The FAA said the controller made the decision “out of an abundance of caution” and said an investigation was ongoing as of Tuesday afternoon.
American Airlines in a separate statement said its flight was scheduled to travel from Boston to Chicago and returned to its gate after its takeoff clearance was canceled.
American Airlines said the flight took off later in the afternoon around 2:30 p.m.
“The safety of our customers and team members is our top priority and we apologize for the delay in our customer’s travel plans,” American Airlines said.
7NEWS spoke with a passenger on the American Airlines flight who described the moments the close call played out.
Cosmo Rowell said the plane had started to barrel down the runway as it would in a takeoff. Then, he said the pilot had to suddenly slam on the brakes, resulting in what Rowell described as a “massive jolt.”
“We got a good speed going and it seemed like we were just about to take off before they canceled the clearance,” Rowell said.
Rowell said he is a frequent flier who travels every other week for work. He said he had never experienced anything like Monday’s incident.
“The pilot comes on the intercom and he says ‘Hey guys, sorry about that. We had to hit our emergency brakes. Obviously we had to abort the takeoff. It appeared that an aircraft started actually impeding on our runway.’” Rowell said.
This incident was at least the fourth close call or collision at Logan to date this year.
In February, the FAA said a small private jet took off without clearance as a JetBlue commercial flight came in for a landing on an intersecting runway.
The JetBlue pilot managed to evade the other plane and avoid a potential disaster.
Days later, in early March, two United Airlines flights made contact on the tarmac as one plane pushed back from its gate while the other was parked.
In June, a United flight clipped the tail of a Delta plane while taxiing at a low speed. While both planes had passengers on board, no one was hurt.
In the aftermath of this latest incident, Rowell shared his thoughts.
“The fact that it’s not the first time is actually concerning, especially as someone who flies a lot,” he said. “That needs to be fixed.”
There was no word as of Tuesday night on why the Spirit flight was close to the hold line on Monday afternoon.
7NEWS has reached out to Spirit but had not heard back as of around 10 p.m.
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