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Close Call Averted: American Airlines Flight 457Q Incident Explained



American Airlines Flight 457Q

Have you heard about the recent incident involving American Airlines Flight 457Q? On August 14th, 2023, this flight departing Boston Logan International Airport bound for Chicago narrowly avoided a collision with a Spirit Airlines aircraft. This event highlights the importance of air traffic control and safety measures in place to prevent accidents.

What Happened?

The incident unfolded as follows:

  • Landing Spirit Aircraft: A Spirit Airlines flight (NKS1444) was landing on runway 22 Left at Boston Logan.
  • Taxiing American Airlines Flight: American Airlines Flight 457Q (registration N946AN) was taxiing for takeoff on runway 22 Right, a parallel runway.
  • Runway Incursion: The Spirit Airlines flight crossed the hold-short line, which is a designated point before the runway where aircraft must stop and wait for clearance.
  • Air Traffic Control Intervention: The air traffic controller noticed the incursion and immediately canceled takeoff clearance for American Airlines Flight 457Q.
  • Safe Takeoff: American Airlines Flight 457Q aborted takeoff and taxied to safety. The aircraft departed for Chicago approximately two hours and ten minutes later.

Why Did This Happen?

The cause of the incident is still under investigation. However, it highlights the potential dangers of runway incursions. These occur when an aircraft enters a runway without proper authorization or clearance.

How Are Runway Incursions Prevented?

Several measures are in place to prevent runway incursions:

  • Air Traffic Control: Air traffic controllers are responsible for monitoring aircraft movements and ensuring separation between them.
  • Pilot Training: Pilots undergo extensive training on runway procedures and situational awareness.
  • Airport Markings: Clear runway markings and signage guide pilots on taxiways and hold-short lines.
  • Advanced Warning Systems: Some airports utilize advanced technology to detect runway incursions and alert controllers.

What Happened to the Passengers?

According to news reports, some passengers on American Airlines Flight 457Q described the incident as “terrifying.” Thankfully, there were no injuries reported. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is investigating the incident, and appropriate actions will likely be taken based on their findings.

FAQs Regarding American Airlines Flight 457Q Incident

Q: Was there a collision between the two airplanes?

A: No, thanks to the quick intervention of the air traffic controller, a collision was averted.

Q: Were there any injuries?

A: No injuries were reported.

Q: What happened to the flights involved?

A: American Airlines Flight 457Q departed for Chicago after a delay. The Spirit Airlines flight continued to its destination as well.

Q: Is it safe to fly?

A: Air travel remains one of the safest modes of transportation. Runway incursions are rare, and multiple safety measures are in place to prevent them.


The American Airlines Flight 457Q incident serves as a reminder of the importance of air traffic control and safety procedures. While rare, runway incursions can have serious consequences. Fortunately, in this case, the quick actions of the air traffic controller prevented a potential disaster.

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