What was that?
A pilot of a passenger airline has reported seeing a mysterious, unknown figure fly past his aircraft above Heathrow Airport, a report released earlier this week has revealed.
The unnamed captain was looking out the cockpit window when he saw a ‘cigar-shaped, metallic object’ flying at a similar altitude, seemingly directly at his plane.
A report on the apparent near-miss, which took place in July, has just been released by the UK Airprox Board, part of the Civil Aviation Authority.
In a report released earlier this week it read: “Having very little time to focus, he was under the apprehension that they were on a collision course with no time to react.
“His immediate reaction was to duck to the right and reach over the alert the FO (first officer); there was no time to talk to alert him.
“His first words to the FO were, ‘did you see that?’ who replied ‘see what?’”
Investigators have reportedly since ruled out the possibility that it was a meteorological balloon or a helium balloon leading many skeptics to wonder what the object actually was.
The report added: “Nevertheless, the A320 pilot was subject to a powerful impression of immediate danger, caused by his perception of an object closing rapidly on his aircraft.
“Although only supposition, members opined that this may have been due to a combination of a possible reflection of the low sun off one of the aircraft to the west, and of the pilot's head movement as he looked forward.
“It was decided that, although the reflection theory had some merit, the overall dearth of information relating to the event rendered any meaningful finding impossible.”
Whatever the object actually was remains open for debate.
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