Delta Airbus flight aborts take-off after landed Learjet wrong turns at airport

Delta Airlines Airbus A321 N116DN departing Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport.
Robin Guess /

A Delta Airlines flight was forced to abort its take-off after air traffic controllers became concerned about another aircraft on the airport’s taxiway. 

The Airbus A321 was due to travel from Louis Armstrong New Orleans Airport (MSY) to Salt Lake City Airport (SLC) on March 31, 2023, when the incident occurred. 

According to a passenger who spoke with WVUE the aircraft came to a “screeching emergency stop” while the plane was travelling at high speeds on the runway and preparing to take-off. 

The Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) confirmed the incident occurred but arose from an “abundance of caution” by an air traffic controller rather than an active danger to passengers and crew. 

According to the FAA a Learjet, which had arrived from Cuernavaca International Airport (CVJ) in Mexico, made a wrong turn on the taxiway after it landed at New Orleans.  

The FAA stressed that at no point did the Learjet cross the hold-short line.  

The Delta aircraft reportedly remained on the tarmac for nearly 45 minutes before returning to the gate where the jet was checked, and the tires allowed to cool down.  

“An air traffic controller canceled the take-off clearance for Delta Air Lines Flight 1482 after a Learjet landed at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport and made a wrong turn onto a taxiway,” a spokesperson for the FAA said.  

They added: “The Learjet never crossed the hold-short line. The controller canceled the take-off clearance for the Delta Airbus A321 out of an abundance of caution. This incident occurred around 7:45 p.m. local time on March 31.” 

American airports have suffered from a string of near misses this year resulting in an aviation safety summit being called by the Transportation Secretary, Pete Buttigieg, to discuss the issue with sector leaders.  

This latest incident at New Orleans Airport could indicate just how cautious air traffic controllers are being following the spate of near misses.  

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