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Oops! Pilot almost lands at wrong Florida airport

The (Fort Myers, Fla.) News-Press
FILE - In this Friday, June 3, 2016, file photo, an American Airlines passenger jet takes off from Miami International Airport in Miami. Qatar Airways is attempting to buy a 10 percent stake in American Airlines, triggering U.S. antitrust oversight over deals of such size. American said in a regulatory filing Thursday, June 22, 2017, that the bid was unsolicited, but that there have been conversations between the CEOs of both airlines. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File)

FORT MYERS, Fla. – An American Airlines flight from Philadelphia almost landed at the wrong Florida airport before air traffic controllers guided it back on course.

The Fort Myers News-Press reports that a pilot began approaching Page Field on Thursday, but the plane was supposed to be landing at Southwest Florida International Airport more than seven miles away.

Page Field is a general aviation airport that used to serve as the region’s commercial airport until Southwest Florida International opened in 1983.

A local pilot told the newspaper the Airbus A320 descended to about 800 feet on approach to Page Field before it climbed back to 1,500 feet and zigzagged to the correct airport.

The longer of the two runways at Page Field is 6,400 feet, while the runway at Southwest Florida International is 12,000 feet long.

The Federal Aviation Administration called the incident “unusual.”

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