Heathrow-bound planes in mid-air 'near miss'


Wentworth golf crowd 'gasps' at Heathrow-bound plane mid-air 'near miss'Wenn

Spectators at Wentworth golf course were yesterday left "gasping" as two Heathrow-bound passenger planes looked to be heading for a mid-air collision above their heads.

But, in reality, the distance between the planes was not uncommon.

According to the Daily Mail, the plane on the left is a mile or two lower than the plane on the right, and both are taking part in a process called 'stacking', where pilots wait their turn to land.

So crowds at the BMW PGA Championship in Surrey actually witnessed an optical illusion.

A spokesman for air traffic control at Heathrow told the paper: "At all times, planes are kept five horizontal miles apart and at least 1,000ft vertically. Even when it looks like the planes are close, there is no danger."

He added: "We do hear reports of these from time to time - especially in the summer when it is a perfectly clear day and there are no visual reference points, making it appear that two planes are close."

And visitors at Wentworth certainly thought they were about to witness a mid-air disaster.

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This landing no doubt ended up being textbook perfect, but some airports have rather scarier take-offs and landings:

World's scariest airports

World's scariest airports