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Flying Blind

Broken radar forces Qastas to “fly blind” over the Pacific

Unal Basusta, eTN Ambassador  Oct 30, 2008

The crew of a Qantas jumbo carrying almost 300 people over the Pacific Ocean was forced to rely on weather reports from another aircraft when its own radar broke down.

The incident occurred on Qantas flight 12 from Los Angeles to Sydney, which traveled via Auckland, a Qantas spokeswoman has confirmed.

The faulty weather radar was discovered on the Boeing 747-400 a few hours into the 12-hour LA-Auckland leg of the flight.

An Air New Zealand flight crew a short distance ahead on the same route relayed weather details to the trailing Qantas crew.

"An Air New Zealand flight that was on the same LA to Auckland trip was a short distance ahead and it provided the Qantas aircraft with information from its own radar system throughout the journey," she said.

The radar fault did not pose any danger, she said.

It was corrected in Auckland and the flight arrived in Sydney early on Wednesday, about four hours late, the spokeswoman said.

The Seven Network reported that the Qantas pilot told the passengers that he was "flying blind.”

Another told Seven the Air New Zealand flight could be seen ahead of the Qantas jumbo.

Broken radar forces Qastas to “fly blind” over the Pacific
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