Terrible air traffic controller prank causes a pilot to abort landing an outbound Detroit flight

June 17, 2014


An air traffic controller at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport has been suspended after reportedly pulling a prank on a Delta airline pilot with a plane full of passengers coming from Detroit causing him to suddenly abort his landing, according to CBS46.

Apparently, the pilot of the Boeing 777-200LR wide-body jet was just 1,000 feet above ground when he received a command from the air traffic controller to abort his landing and to loop back around for a second attempt. While the controller did come back on almost immediately to say, “I’m kidding, Delta 630. After you land, I’ve got no one behind you. Expect to exit right,” the Delta pilot had already begun his ascent.

“He (the air traffic controller) should be looked at very carefully, because what he did was completely wrong,” said Jack Barker, a retired administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration. “It’s something I have never heard in all the years I’ve worked.”

The FAA said the plane landed safely on its second attempt.

Here’s the audio between the air traffic controller and the pilot, via CBS46.

Tags: , , , ,

  • Carri Skowronek

    My Husband works for Delta and he and I were on that flight and we were told by the captain that there was a plane that had not cleared the runway yet and not enough distance for us to land, so we had to pull out of our landing. If this was truly the case and was a joke by an Air Traffic Controller (NOT FUNNY) let me tell you although the pilot did a great job pulling the plane up out of our decent the initial unknown of what was happening was scary before the captain came on and told us what was going on. And to now find out it was a Joke I am angry!!!!