Three aircraft, a two Boeing 737-800s, and a Boeing 757-200 subsequently landed on Birmingham runway 33 while there was a ladder just to the runway centreline’s right.
A total of 406 passengers were on board the three planes. The first aircraft was an ASL Airlines 737-800, with registration EI-DPC followed by a Jet2 Boeing 737-800, with registration G-GDFR. The third aircraft was a TUI 757-200, with registration G-OOBA.
The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) said that the ladder was droved on the runway by two airport technicians who had been working on approach lights on 8 September 2020.
Pilots of the 737s informed that they had seen something on the runway just after the touchdown markers. The ATC then contacted the 757’s crew asking whether they wanted to continue their approach. The crew decided to continue and landed safely.
Upon landing the third aircraft, the runway was immediately closed, and an inspection was ordered. The inspection found a 7 ft A-frame step ladder on the runway. The runway was then opened after 19 minutes.
“Taking the position of the ladder on the runway into account, and the main and nose landing gear track width of all three aircraft, each narrowly missed the ladder,” said AAIB.
“Had the ladder been struck by the main or nose landing gear directly on touchdown, it is likely this would cause the break-up of the ladder with a high risk of explosive tyre burst.”
Feature Image: “AAIB”