Audio: ATC Joke Causes Boeing 777 to Abort Landing

Controller's humor forces crew to make go-around in Atlanta.

ATL Control Tower
ATL Control Tower
** Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport's
ATC Tower (Photo credit: J. Glover)**

An air traffic controller's attempt at humor has caught the attention of the national media as well as the FAA after his joke forced a Delta 777 on approach to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport to go around.

Delta Flight 630, en route from Detroit, was flying at just over 1,000 feet in Atlanta airspace after receiving clearance from the tower to land on Runway 27L. In addition to repeating the clearance back to the controller, the pilot said, "We do not have a gate yet so you might wanna figure out some place to park while we sort it out."

The controller responded by saying "Delta 630 go around," adding moments later, "I'm kidding Delta 630. After you land, I've got no one behind you. Expect to exit right."

The crew, however, was not amused. The pilot responded that he was on the go, and the flight later landed without incident. The FAA says it is currently investigating the incident.

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