Second Near-Collision Occurs at Logan in Just Over a Week

A jet was forced to abort its takeoff when another plane crossed onto its runway, the second such incident in just over a week at Logan International Airport.

The American Airlines jet was moving into position for takeoff when an American Eagle regional jet that had just landed crossed the runway, said Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Jim Peters. He did not know how many people were on the planes.

The jet's clearance for takeoff was canceled, and the FAA is investigating whether the pilot of the American Eagle plane or air traffic controllers were at fault.

Peters could not say how close the planes had come to colliding Tuesday, but The Boston Globe quoted an aviation source familiar with the investigation saying they came within 1,000 feet of each other.

It was the 16th runway safety lapse at Logan since October 2004. Officials say they have found no link between the incidents, though they have cited Logan's cramped runways as a reason why problems occur there with such frequency. The airport is the nation's 17th busiest.

On Sept. 27, a FedEx cargo jet that had just started its takeoff came within 2,000 feet of a twin-propeller plane crossing the same runway.

In the most serious incident, on June 9, an Aer Lingus Airbus A330 and a US Airways Boeing 737, carrying a combined 381 passengers and crew, came within 170 feet and a few seconds of colliding as both were taking off. FAA officials blamed errors by two air traffic controllers, both of whom were suspended and sent for retraining.

Most of the other runway incidents at Logan were categorized as unlikely to have resulted in a collision.

Craig P. Coy, chief executive officer of the Massachusetts Port Authority, which runs Logan, recently asked federal officials to punish controllers involved in runway incursions by revoking or suspending their licenses.

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