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Cathay Pacific Apologizes for Manchester Airport Taxiway Incident, Commits to Investigation and Improvements

Cathay Pacific

Cathay Pacific Airways issued an apology for an incident that occurred at Manchester Airport in the United Kingdom. The incident involved one of the airline’s planes blocking a taxiway, causing delays for other flights at the airport.

Background of the Incident

On November 25, 2023, a Cathay Pacific Airbus A350-1000, registration B-LXA, was scheduled to operate flight CX317 from Manchester Airport to Hong Kong. As the plane was taxiing to the runway for takeoff, it accidentally blocked a taxiway, causing other flights to be delayed. The incident was caused by a miscommunication between the plane’s pilots and the airport’s air traffic control.

Consequences of the Incident

The incident caused a number of flights to be delayed, with some being held on the ground for up to two hours. Passengers on affected flights reported being stuck on planes without air conditioning or proper ventilation. As a result of the incident, the airport’s air traffic control was forced to halt departures for a period of time.

Apology and Statement

In the wake of the incident, Cathay Pacific issued an apology to passengers who were affected by the delays. In a statement, the airline acknowledged that the incident had caused inconvenience to passengers and apologized for any discomfort caused. The airline also stated that it was working with Manchester Airport to investigate the incident and to ensure that similar incidents do not occur in the future.

Investigation and Lessons learned

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) in the UK has launched an investigation into the incident. The AAIB will conduct a detailed analysis of the events leading up to the incident, as well as the actions taken by the pilots and air traffic control. The goal of the investigation is to determine the cause of the incident and to identify any safety issues that may have contributed to the incident.

It is expected that Cathay Pacific will take the necessary steps to ensure that similar incidents do not occur in the future by re-evaluating their SOPs and training pilots better. They would need to ensure that the lines of communication are open and clear, not only between pilots and air traffic control but also within the flight deck crew. If any procedural or operational issues are found, it will be addressed accordingly.


The incident at Manchester Airport was unfortunate, and Cathay Pacific’s apology is a step in the right direction towards addressing the issue. The airline has acknowledged the inconvenience caused to passengers and has committed to investigating the incident in order to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future. The Air Accidents Investigation Branch is also conducting an investigation to find the root cause and report safety issues, if any, and to make recommendations for improvements.

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