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  • ​Atlas 747F came within 670ft of Hong Kong mountain

​Atlas 747F came within 670ft of Hong Kong mountain

An Atlas Air Boeing 747-8 Freighter came very close to a mountain after taking off from Hong Kong International Airport on 24 September.

After departing from runway 07R at 15:44 local time, the aircraft (N856GT) deviated right from its assigned track toward the high ground of Lo Fu Tau on Lantau Island, says Hong Kong's Civil Aviation Department (CAD) in a preliminary report.

Air traffic control informed the crew that the aircraft was off track, and told them to turn left to resume the standard instrument departure (SID). This was followed by a request to "expedite the climb to 5,000ft."

With the aircraft at 2,000ft, its Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System (EGPWS) gave a "terrain, pull up" aural and visual warning.

"In response, the [pilot flying] reacted and the aircraft turned left away from the high ground," says the report.

"The aircraft evaded the high ground by approximately 670ft. Subsequently, the aircraft re-established the SID track at approximately 15:46 and continued without further incident. There was neither injury to personnel nor damage to the aircraft involved and no other air traffic was affected."

Meteorological data from 24 September shows that visibility was 10km, with few clouds at 1,500ft and scattered clouds at 2,800ft. There were no indications of wind shear or turbulence.

The aircraft was operating under a wet-lease by Cathay Pacific Airways. It was bound for Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, and carried a crew of four.

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