In this day and age, with aircraft being equipped with the latest navigation technology and pilots having to go through rigorous tests and training, that a pilot would actually think that the planet Venus, was actually a plane coming towards him. When the sleepy pilot saw this, he set the plane into a dive to avoid this ‘oncoming aircraft’, which injured 16 passengers, and almost crashing into a real plane.
The airline also tried to cover up this mistake by the pilot, by saying that the injuries occurred from some unexpected turbulence, however, the Transport authorities in Canada investigated, and released to the public, the actual turn of events from January.
It wasn’t just the pilot that was a little tired, but the rules of Air Canada allow the first officer to sleep on all transatlantic flights, which meant that the only pair of eyes on the controls and looking out of the window, were the pilot’s. When he was awoken by the pilot with the report of this, he believed it was another plane, setting it into a steep nosedive.
Unfortunately, this was whilst many of the passengers were having their worry-free sleep, without buckling their seatbelts, against what most airlines advise to keep them on when in your seat. This meant that many of them hit their heads on the overhead lockers, before being treated in a Swiss hospital for head injuries.
It was confirmed by Astronomers however, that it would’ve been very easy to see the unusually bright Venus as another plane.
It looks like the headlight on an airplane.
An ex-pilot also confirmed that whilst it wouldn’t have been unlikely that this mistake happened, he was surprised that the steep dive by the pilot took place, as it shouldn’t have escalated so far.