Swiss investigators have opened an inquiry into a runway conflict incident at Zurich involving a control vehicle and a departing Airbus A320.

The incident occurred on 14 February, says investigation authority SUST, as the Swiss A320 was operating to Brussels.

Provisional information from SUST indicates that the aircraft was taking off from runway 28 at the same time as a runway control vehicle “drove towards” the intersection of runways 28 and 34.

SUST has given no data on the separation between the aircraft and the vehicle, nor confirmed whether the vehicle – operating with the callsign ‘Gusti-1’, and a single occupant – crossed the active runway as the jet departed.

But it states that “poor visibility” prevailed. Meteorological data for the airport at the time of the incident, just before 08:00, indicates freezing fog.

Visibility on the two runways, the weather data states, was around 1,700-2,000m.

SUST says it has opened an inquiry into the event, but has yet to reach any conclusions. It has not revealed any details on radio communications with the aircraft or the vehicle.

It identifies the A320 involved – which was transporting 70 passengers and six crew members – as HB-IJQ, a CFM International CFM56-powered airframe originally delivered to Swissair in 1997.

Swiss A320 HB-IJQ incident-c-Heiner Pixabay

Source: Heiner/Pixabay

Investigators indicate the take-off incident occurred during low-visibility conditions