American Plane and Air Force Jets in Near Miss

A near-miss between an American Airlines passenger airplane and two Air Force cargo jets flying in formation is being investigated by the NTSB.

In a statement, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said the near-miss occurred on Jan. 20, and involved an American 777-200 headed to Sao Paulo, Brazil from New York's John F. Kennedy Airport, and military jets flying towards McGuire Air Force Base in New Jersey.

American Flight 951 and the cargo planes came dangerously close, safety officials said. Radar showed the planes within a mile of each other, seconds from a mid-air collision.

The American plane was over the Atlantic Ocean, about 80 miles southeast of New York City, when the plane's proximity-detection system warned that the two C-17s were in close proximity, the NTSB said.

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) controllers and military controllers received the same alert.

Disaster was averted when the American pilot quickly changed course.

The NTSB investigation includes looking at how controllers handled the flights. The FAA is also reviewing the matter, including a focus on military jets flying in formation.

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