Pilot Reports

It's official: UFO buzzed airliner in UK

By Ted Bonnitt on May 16th, 2013
It's official: UFO buzzed airliner in UK
Diagram of the near miss based on the pilot's report.
Diagram of the near miss based on the pilot's report.

A commercial airliner was involved in a near miss with a UFO over Glasgow, Scotland, on December  2, 2012, and an official investigation has concluded that the identity of the mystery craft is "unable to be established."

Meaning, the plane nearly collided with a UFO.

The airline pilots were making their descent over Bailleston in clear skies just before 1 PM when the UFO buzzed their Airbus A320 passenger jet, which can carry up to 220 passengers.

The pilots reported (transcript below) that they saw a blue and yellow object "loom ahead" as it was coming in for a landing at Glasgow Airport.

The plane was on final approach and at an altitude of 4000 feet when the flight crew saw the object about 100 meters away.

According the recently released official investigation report by the UK Airprox Board, "The object passed directly beneath before either of the crew had time to take avoiding action or had 'really registered it' although they were both agreed that it appeared blue and yellow, or silver in color with a small frontal area but that is was 'bigger than a balloon'."

The pilot estimated that the UFO flew to within 300 feet of their aircraft and considered it a high collision risk.

The pilot radioed Glasgow Airport tower to ask if there was another aircraft being monitored at the time and was told that nothing had been seen on radar.

The report stated that the object was unlikely to have been a conventional aircraft or balloon because it did not appear on radar.

Once on the ground the A320 pilot gave a further description of the event to the Glasgow Aerodrome Controller:

A320: “…we seemed to only miss it by a couple of hundred feet it went directly beneath us … wherever we were when we called it in it was within about ten seconds”; “… couldn’t tell what direction it was going but it went right underneath us.”

EGPF: “do you suspect it might have been a glider or something like that?”

A320: “well maybe a microlight … it just looked too big for a balloon.

The report concluded that, "Members were unable to reach a conclusions to a likely candidate for the conflicting aircraft and it was therefore felt that the board had insufficient information to determine a cause or risk."

In other words, they have no idea what it was.

Transcript of the pilot radio conversation with Glasgow Tower:

A320: "Glasgow Approach [A320 C/S]"

EGPF: "[A320 C/S] pass your message"

A320: "Er yeah we just had something pass underneath us quite close [1255:30] and nothing on TCAS have you got anything on in our area"

EGPF: "Er negative err we've got nothing on err radar and we're n- not talking to any traffic either"

A320: "Er not quite sure what it was but it definitely err quite large [1255:40] and it's blue and yellow"

EGPF: "OK that's understood err do you have a an estimate for the height"

A320: "Maybe err [1255:50] yeah we were probably about erm four hundred to five hundred feet above it so it's probably about three and a half thousand feet."

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