Drone Nearly Collides with US Airways Jet

US Airways Airbus A320

US Airways

A US Airways Express jet nearly collided with a drone while landing at an airport in Florida, authorities have revealed.

The shocking near mid-air collision while the flight was carrying passengers from South Carolina to the Tallahassee Regional Airport was first reported to authorities on March 22 but not publicly revealed until this week.

The unmanned aircraft system (UAS) was within five miles of the airport and flying about 2,300 feet when it was spotted, the Federal Aviation Administration said in an email to the Daily News.

Jim Williams, head of the FAA’s unmanned aircraft office, described the UAS as camouflage-painted. He said the pilot witnessing the close call said he “was sure he had collided with it,” the Wall Street Journal reported.

“The risk for a small (drone) to be ingested into a passenger airline engine is very real,” Williams said at a conference Thursday. “The results could be catastrophic.”

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