A Delta Air Lines flight clipped the wing of an empty United Airlines A319 at Hollywood Burbank Airport Tuesday night. But according to the pilot, it was United’s fault.
The Embraer RJ-175 Delta Connection flight, operated by SkyWest, was taxiing into Terminal 2 at BUR when it grazed the wingtips of the United Airlines A320 parked at the next gate.
One passenger onboard reported that the pilot immediately came on the intercom and blamed the United aircraft, saying it was “parked out too far”. The Delta jet stopped immediately.
Passenger Bernadette Kashdan told local news stations, “It felt like we hit a body. I said ‘what did we just hit? We actually hit somebody?'”
Thankfully, the United A319 was empty.
Both Delta and United offered short statements about the scrape. Delta:
After a routine landing in Burbank, California, a wingtip of SkyWest flight 4673, operating as Delta Connection from Salt Lake City to Burbank made contact with another aircraft wingtip while taxiing to the gate. There were no injuries and all 42 passengers deplaned normally through the main cabin door.
A United Airlines aircraft briefly came into contact with another aircraft that was taxiing at Burbank. There were no passengers on board the United aircraft and no reported injuries.
Airport operations continued without interruption after the incident. Although it appeared that damage was limited, the aircraft could not be moved until the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) arrived to investigate.
I flew out of Burbank twice last week and see a United A320 and Delta Embraer RJ-175 on the ground often. Admittedly, I have to chuckle at the human defense mechanism. It may well be that the United flight was “parked out too far.” But that’s like hitting a parked car. Come on! And what about the Skywest ground staff (who also work for United Express)? Did they not guide the pilot into the gate? I’m skeptical over blame, but we cannot blame the parked aircraft!
image: Hollywood Burbank Airport