Air India pilot lands at US airport despite multiple system failure, adverse weather, lack of fuel

About 370 passengers onboard an Air India flight from New Delhi to New York had a narrow escape on 11 September after the flight experienced multiple system failure. The flight, which was to land at the John F Kennedy airport in New York, managed to land at an alternate designated airport in Newark.

According to NDTV, the flight involved was AI-101, and had 370 people on board. “Auto land is not available. We have multiple instrument failure,” one of the pilots was heard telling air traffic controllers at JFK, according to audio files available on, a website that archives ATC radio transmissions.

An Air India spokesperson told Hindustan Times, “The weather was bad at New York airport and due to the snag, radar was not visible in the cockpit. The pilot had to carry out landing without the help of radar and since weather was bad in New York, the aircraft was diverted to Newark.

The instrument landing system (ILS) failed at the last minute forcing the pilots to abort touch-down. They spent close to one and a half hour in the air trying to figure out — in coordination with Air Traffic Controllers of JFK airport — an airport in NYC or a nearby city with good visibility reports Economic Times.