Thursday, 12 July 2012

UFO sightings by civilian pilots

In a previous post, I promised to highlight select and relatively recent incidents which, to me, definitely fall into the as yet unexplained 5-10 per cent category of UFO sightings - and which are all the more interesting because of the involvement of experienced civilian air pilots.

I wanted to find events that had occurred relatively recently, by which I mean the last twenty or so years, as events that go further back than this become ever harder to corroborate or usefully explain (which I will expand on in a future post).

The three incidents I have selected are below in date order of the event itself with the earliest first. All involve British civil aviation pilots. A short video accompanies each and I have given a brief summary as the video in each case is self-explanatory.

 UFO sighting over Manchester near miss
January 1995


Perhaps the most impressive incident of the three in my view. This is a rare example of a 'near miss' event with a UFO or UAP actually being filed for investigation by the UK pilots involved. It was investigated by a representative of the Joint Airprox (An amalgamation of 'Air' and 'Proximity') Working Group or JAWG, which is an independent body tasked with investigating 'near miss' incidents in terms of air safety and which is not normally associated with UFO investigation. After a thorough investigation, the JAWG could not reach any conclusion about what the pilots claimed to have seen. The MOD retained records of this incident which are available to view on the national archives site. Both Nick Pope and Dr David Clarke feature in the video and - coming from opposing camps about the UFO phenomenon - seem to both agree that this is an unusual and compelling case.    



Lufthansa + British Airways UFO Sighting
November 1995


Both German and British pilots observed a cylindrical UFO or UAP over Long Island, New York which they appeared to agree was not a natural phenomenon. What makes this especially interesting is the actual recordings of the comments made by both German and British pilots. Thinking this might be military in origin, civilian air traffic control (at Boston) made a call - also recorded - to 'Giant Killer', a call sign used by controllers responsible for military and restricted air traffic, which in turn confirmed that they had no military flights in the vicinity of the Lufthansa and British Airways planes. Another civil aviation incident also features on this video.



The Guernsey UFO
April 2007


Ray Bowyer  - a civilian pilot of a small passenger plane - and his passengers, saw what they claim was not one but two 'mile-wide' UFOs during a flight over Guernsey. These were not only seen by another plane in the area but were allegedly captured on radar - although local air traffic control didn't appear to confirm or deny the source of the radar return.




My understanding is that all of these remain unexplained to this day

Such encounters are particularly compelling as civilian pilots should, on the whole, be rational, experienced and highly-trained professionals who are expert witnesses where routine air phenomena are concerned.  In addition, they would not normally be prone to making observations or statements that could jeopardise their jobs or status amongst their peers.

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