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Accident panel to probe botched plane landings, near misses.

TOKYO, Oct. 4 Kyodo

The Ministry of Transport plans to add serious aircraft incidents such as botched landings and near misses to the duties of its accident investigation panel from the next fiscal year, ministry officials said Wednesday.

The incidents subject to probes by the panel would include planes overshooting runways and landings performed on incorrect runways. They have so far been investigated by safety inspectors or other officials in the ministry's Civil Aviation Bureau, but not by investigators with its Aircraft Accident Investigation Commission.

The step is intended to help identify accident risks. In the United States and Europe, accident investigation panels have already been looking into such incidents in line with a recommendation under the Convention on International Civil Aviation.

A Japan Air System (JAS) passenger aircraft landed on a runway that had not yet opened to commercial planes in February at Haneda airport in Tokyo. In March, a JAS plane overshot a runway in heavy snow at Aomori airport.

The commission will be upgraded next fiscal year, which begins April 1, 2001, to also cover railway accidents.
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Publication:Japan Transportation Scan
Date:Oct 9, 2000
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