News and journalism in the Pacific Islands came alive when an Air New Zealand Boeing 767 nearly hit another plane just over Nadi, in Fiji. The news had people speculating about the cause of the problem, and the safety of aviation in and around the Pacific Islands.
The plane that was missed by breaths and prayers was a V Australia jet that has remained un-identified, but is known to belong to Virgin Blue International Airlines. The incident, reported in May, has led to widespread investigations, but not much information. Air New Zealand officials chose not to make themselves available for comments, though their PR representative, Lara Harrison, reported that the company is busy making enquiries.
Harrison claims that the two airplanes were in constant contact with one another, and that nothing un-planned had occured. Sources for news and journalism in the Pacific Islands would disagree with that remark, as the incident caused panic in those who fly regularly as part of their weekly commute to nearby islands. V Australia representative, Amanda Bolger, stated that the airplanes were in fact alert to the presence of one another, and that neither of the airlines could be faulted for failure to alter courses.
The two planes passed with a mere 800 foot vertical clearance, which caused both planes to retard from the force of air speed. Further specifics about the incident have been with held by both airlines, as they worry about more bad publicity. Tourism to and from Fiji has curbed since this incident, and industry experts predict that it will continue to be affected by reports of the “near miss.”
Though news and journalism in the Pacific Islands is usually slow, this story has proven a hot ticket for reporters, even past the summer when it occured. Wanting answers to enquiries that have been conducted already, Pacific Islands inhabitants pursue the journals to keep the media storm thriving.