The number of airprox incidents in the United Kingdom involving commercial passenger aircraft remained static in 2010, according to a report by the UK Airprox Board (UKAB).
There were 35 incidents involving passenger aircraft in 2010, the same number as 2009. The majority of these incidents involved the airliner conflicting with a military or general aviation light aircraft. However, for the first time in over 10 years none of these incidents were regarded as ‘risk-bearing’.
As it published its 2010 data analysis, the UK Airprox Board (UKAB) said that year-on-year airspace conflicts involving two commercial aircraft had halved, with only 5 incidents in 2010 compared to 11 in 2009. The steady decline in these types of incidents from the early 2000s (in 2002 there were 39 such incidents) is due a combination of factors including the airline industry’s adoption of sophisticated collision avoidance systems and the combined efforts of operators and air traffic controllers tackling the issue.
Overall, however, the total numbers of incidents increased on 2009, with 167 incidents in 2010, compared to 147 the previous year, largely as a result of an upturn in conflicts involving military and general aviation aircraft.
UKAB reports, produced jointly for the Chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority and the Chief of the Air Staff, Royal Air Force, are principally aimed at UK pilots and air traffic controllers, both civil and military. Their purpose is to promote air safety awareness and understanding by identifying and sharing the lessons arising from UK Airprox incidents.