Federal Aviation Administration officials said Tuesday that an error by an air traffic controller allowed a commuter plane to get too close to a Boeing 767 on approach to Los Angeles International Airport last week.
FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said Tuesday that an American Eagle Embraer E135 came within three miles of the tail of the Chilean- based LAN Airlines plane on Jan. 19 while flying at about 7,000 feet.
Pilots are required to maintain five miles of separation to avoid wake turbulence that can send smaller planes out of control.
Controllers union spokesman Melvin Davis told San Diego’s KGTV that controllers are overworked and understaffed.
Gregor called the error “serious” but said it was not caused by understaffing and there was no imminent danger to the smaller aircraft.
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