Two Air India flights flew over Iran airspace a few hours before Israel attack

Spokesman says there were no flying restrictions or alerts from aviation authorities prohibiting flights. Air India rerouted flights later during the weekend.
Two Air India flights flew over Iran airspace a few hours before Israel attack
Anjali Raj / Jaano Junction

New Delhi: At least two Air India planes flew through Iran-controlled airspace barely a few hours preceding that country’s massive aerial attack on Israel, potentially putting the lives of several passengers and crew at risk.

Air India flights 116 and 131 flew from New York to Mumbai and from Mumbai to London, respectively, on April 13 and April 14 above the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman when the shadow of a conflict between Iran and Israel loomed large, showed data by Flightradar24, a website that tracks flights.

Iran attacked Israel over the weekend, firing at least 300 drones and missiles. Iran’s military assault was expected for days after tensions between the two countries ratcheted up on April 1, when fighter jets struck a building that is part of the Iranian Embassy at Damascus in Syria.

The Air India planes, a Boeing 777-232 and Boeing 777ER, can accommodate roughly 280 and 330 passengers.

What Air India said

A NOTAM, or notice to airmen, is an alert issued by an aviation authority to pilots about potential hazards along a route or on ground.

Several global airlines began rerouting or cancelling flights on the night between Saturday and Sunday, and on Monday (April 15).

It is unclear why Air India decided these flights posed a hazard and not the ones that flew through Iran’s airspace.

Airlines typically fly at altitudes of 35,000 feet deemed safe by aviation authorities, even if the flights are routed over troubled hotspots. But turbulence or a freak incident such as engine failure can cause planes to fly at a lower altitude. The Malaysian Airlines flight was operating at an altitude of 33,000 feet when disaster struck.

Also Read
Iran threatens to deploy 'weapons never used before' if Israel retaliates
Two Air India flights flew over Iran airspace a few hours before Israel attack

Airlines typically take the safety of passengers seriously. Shining examples are the flight disruptions caused during winters due to fog.

Source: Hindustan Times

Stay connected to Jaano Junction on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Koo. Listen to our Podcast on Spotify or Apple Podcasts.

Jaano Junction