Bay Area lawmaker moves for more regulation to avoid close calls at SFO

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Newly released video from an SFO surveillance camera shows just how close Air Canada flight 759 came within four commercial airplanes sitting on a taxiway.

ABC7 News obtained audio days after the July 7 incident, but the video shows just how near a miss it really was.

RELATED: NTSB releases new video showing Air Canada flight's close call at SFO

The tower cleared flight 759 to land on a runway, but it was on a trajectory to land on Taxiway C instead, flying just 59 feet above the 1,000 passengers sitting on those four jets waiting for takeoff.

"It would have been one of the great tragedies in the history of aviation," said Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (D-Contra Costa County.)

He adds that intrusions and near misses on runways are up 83 percent at airports across the country. There have been other close calls at SFO, due to pilot error, since Dec. 2016.

RELATED: Air Canada flight nearly lands on taxiway at San Francisco International Airport
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Details are emerging about what could have been a serious incident at San Francisco International Airport last Friday night when an Air Canada plane from Toronto nearly landed on the taxiway.

"It's happening in more dramatic fashion at SFO and some of that is because of the design of the airport," DeSaulnier told ABC7 News. "The runways and the taxiways are very physically close and some of it is that SFO has become busier because of the economy."

Last week, DeSaulnier was able to include four amendments to the FAA's reauthorization to ensure the FAA and NTSB investigate near misses in more detail going forward.

"They involve communication in the cockpit and they involve the design and the approach to the actual runways and taxiways," he said.

DeSaulnier adds that this is just a first step to ensuring better flight safety.

Click here for the full text of the Air Canada pilots' interviews with the NTSB.
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