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Air transportation safety investigation A20O0029

Updated in June 2021 : This investigation is in the report phase.

Table of contents

Bird strike / rejected takeoffs

Air Canada Embraer E190 and Air Canada Boeing 777-300
Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International Airport, Ontario

The occurrence

On , at 0948 eastern daylight time, an Embraer 190-100 aircraft, operated by Air Canada, with four crew and 83 passengers, was conducting a takeoff under visual departure procedures from Runway 06L at the Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International Airport (CYYZ). After the Embraer 190 began its takeoff roll, a Boeing 777-300 aircraft, operated by Air Canada, with 14 crew and 345 passengers, was instructed to position and hold onto Runway 06L. While the Embraer 190 was on the take-off roll, air traffic control issued a takeoff clearance to the Boeing 777. Moments later, the Embraer 190 struck a bird. The flight crew initiated a rejected takeoff and made a radio call on the tower frequency that they were aborting the takeoff. As they made their radio call, the Boeing 777 flight crew read back the take-off clearance on the same frequency and commenced their take-off roll. The simultaneous radio transmissions went undetected—neither air traffic control nor the Boeing 777 flight crew heard the Embraer 190’s radio call.

At approximately 80 knots, the Boeing 777 flight crew observed that the Embraer 190 was still on the runway, initiated a rejected takeoff and made a radio call on the tower frequency that they were also aborting their takeoff. The Embraer 190 decelerated and returned to the terminal. The Boeing 777 flight crew decelerated, stopped on the runway and then proceeded to the terminal after allowing the brakes to cool. There were no injuries. There was no damage to either aircraft.

The TSB is investigating.

Investigation information

Map showing the location of the occurrence


Photo of Jean-Pierre (Jeep) Régnier

Jean-Pierre (Jeep) Régnier is a senior investigator, Standards and Quality Assurance, with the Air Investigations Branch at the TSB head office in Gatineau. He has over 30 years of aviation experience, including 27 years in military aviation in the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) as an officer and a helicopter pilot. During those 27 years in the RCAF, he worked as an accident investigator for 5 years. Mr. Régnier gained his flight experience on the CH-124 Sea King and Bell 206 Jet Ranger helicopters. He earned a master’s degree in safety and accident investigation from Cranfield University, United Kingdom, and joined the TSB in 2015.

Class of investigation

This is a class 3 investigation. These investigations analyze a small number of safety issues, and may result in recommendations. Class 3 investigations are generally completed within 450 days. For more information, see the Policy on Occurrence Classification.

TSB investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation

  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates air, marine, pipeline, and rail transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.