Controller in first lady incident had prior errors

AP News
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Posted: Oct 27, 2011 12:02 PM
Controller in first lady incident had prior errors

A report by federal safety investigators says the air traffic controller who allowed a plane carrying first lady Michelle Obama to fly too close a military cargo jet last spring had accumulated four previous "coordination errors."

The National Transportation Safety Board report released Thursday said the controller violated two Federal Aviation Administration procedures during the incident. The Boeing 737 with Mrs. Obama and vice presidential spouse Jill Biden aboard was forced to abort an intended landing at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland to avoid wake turbulence from the larger military jet and to give it time to clear the runway.

The report said the controller, who wasn't identified, was relieved of his air traffic control duties and sent for retraining, but is approved to handle air traffic again.