Plane carrying Michelle Obama aborts landing after mistake

10:03, April 20, 2011      

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A plane carrying U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama had to abort landing after coming dangerously close to a military cargo plane at Andrews Air Force Base, local media quoted federal officials as saying.

The incident took place Monday, and was due to the mistake of an air traffic controller. The Federal Aviation Administration is expected to release a statement later Tuesday.

Michelle Obama was returning from a television appearance and other events with Vice President Joe Biden's wife Jill in New York and was aboard a Boeing 737 that is part of the presidential fleet.

The controllers in the tower at Andrews recognized that a massive C-17 cargo plane and the Obama flight were far too close when the responsibility for the two aircraft was handed off to them, according to the Washington Post.

They ordered the Obama plane to execute a series of S-turns in an effort to create a safe distance between it and the C-17, federal officials said. When those maneuvers failed to achieve the required distance between the two planes, they aborted landing of the Obama plane and ordered it to circle the airport.

The Obama plane landed safely later.

Source: Xinhua
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