A near-miss collision in the sky above NYC

Posted: 06/21/13 at 12:40 am EDT      Last Updated: 06/21/13 at 11:45 pm EDT

UNDATED (WHDH) -- Two planes nearly collided in the air over New York City as a Delta Boeing 747, cleared to land at Kennedy Airport, missed an approach and ended up flying in the same direction as a shuttle America Embraer 170 Regional jet leaving a runway at nearby Laguardia Airport.

A source told NBC News that the planes came an estimated 100 feet from each other in the air. Both planes landed safely.

In an audio transmission from the control tower, an air traffic controller warned one of the pilots.

“172 heavy. Are you turning?” said the controller.

“Yes sir, we are almost at zero four zero now,” said the pilot.

The controller responded, “Delta 172 heavy, traffic, at 12 o’clock, 1400 feet embrea, 1600 feet.”

To which the pilot said, “Okay, we’ve got them on the fish finder here.”

The incident took place last week and it’s not clear why the Delta pilot made the decision not to land at Kennedy Airport, but the standard procedure, called a missed approach, is regulated by specific procedures for both pilots and controllers.

The FAA released a statement yesterday that said, “The two aircraft were turning away from each other at the point where they lost the required separation.”

They are now investigating the incident, which is the latest in a string of similar incidents in New York over the past few years.

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