EasyJet pilots narrowly missed temporary works reducing runway length at Prague airport when taking off on a flight to Stansted.
The pilots in control of an aircraft with 149 passengers on board only realised their mistake when they neared the end of the runway, according to a report by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch.
The AAIB said the works on the runway were not easily visible to the crew at the start of take-off and the captain said that air traffic control provided no additional warnings.
The Airbus A319 took off on its service to Stansted last July without being damaged or causing injury to anyone on board, the report said.
It said the aircraft “approached closer to the works than would have been intended”.
In pre-flight checks the crew had spotted a notice for Prague airport that the works had reduced the runway length from 3,715 to 2,500 metres.
Before take-off, the pilots had also listened to an automatic terminal information service broadcast about the runway, “but it was reportedly in heavily-accented English,” the report said.
The investigation found that the pilots did not gather from the broadcast that the runway length had been reduced and had “forgotten” the content of the notice.
It meant take-off calculations were conducted for the normal runway length.
The report said the captain of the aircraft later attributed the oversight to “reduced crew awareness at the end of a lengthy duty period”.
An easyJet spokeswoman told the BBC that no-one from the airline had been disciplined over the incident and AAIB’s report “does not make any recommendations”.
She added: “The aircraft took off safely, however, we always seek to learn lessons from any incident.”
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