If you ever thought flying a plane was no joke, tell that to the Air Traffic Controller who felt it necessary, for s**ts and giggles, to instruct his pilot to circle the friendly skies instead of landing.
The U-S Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certainly wasn’t laughing at the incident which took place at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, calling a full-on investigation and deeming it a “potentially dangerous mishap.”
Last Wednesday (June 11, 2014), the Controller reportedly told the pilot of Delta Flight 630, just as he was about to descent from roughly over 1000 feet (300 metres), not to land. Rather, telling the pilot to circle above the airport.
Immediately, he revealed: “I’m kidding, Delta 630. After you land, I’ve got no one behind you. Expect to exit right. Delta 630 you’re clear to land on (runway) 27-Left.”
Unfortunately, the pilot had already altered his course, abandoning the landing and swiftly ascending to 40,000 feet (12,192m).
“You sent us around,” the pilot shot back at the Controller. “Delta 630 is on the go.”
The plane had remained in the air for an hour and a half while the joke or rather misunderstanding of the joke could be rectified before they landed without incident on its second go-around.
In a statement, the FAA said: “We investigating air traffic communications with Delta 630, a Boeing 777 aircraft on approach to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport”.