A civil aviation investigation is underway after two Emirates and Etihad Airways passenger jets allegedly came within seconds of colliding with each other.
The incident was confirmed by spokespeople from both airlines who said Mumbai air traffic control was investigating the incident which took place in Indian airspace on Sunday.
The passenger jets were flying in opposite directions from Dubai to the African island nation of Seychelles when collision alerts went off in both planes’ cockpits.
Seychelles News Agency reports both planes were issued with a ‘resolution advisory’ from the on-board collision avoidance system, and told to immediately climb or descend to avoid crashing.
A resolution advisory warning is issued when planes are within 25 seconds of each other, while a ‘traffic advisory’ warning is issued when planes are within 40 seconds of each other.
The planes had been given recently rerouted flights to avoid Yemeni airspace due to fighting there.
An Emirates spokesperson told UAE news site The National they were working with aviation authorities, but denied the planes or passengers’ safety were ever at risk.
“The crew informed the authorities of the incident and later filed an air safety report, which will be forwarded to Mumbai air traffic control,” the spokesperson said.
“Safety is of paramount importance to Emirates, and we will be cooperating fully with Mumbai air traffic control in the subsequent investigation.”