The easyJet aircraft sunk to an unsafe altitude (Picture: Getty Images)
The Airbus A320 Neo left Edinburgh bound for Geneva with 157 passengers on November 5.
While approaching the runway at Geneva Airport, the aircraft sank to an unsafe altitude and came within seconds of crashing into the lake.
It was 750 feet from the lake and was 7.5 miles away from the runway, Tribune de Genève reports.
Air traffic control staff were forced to alert the pilots that they were flying 1,500 feet lower than they should have been and told them: ‘Check your altitude immediately’.
The pilots were only able to accelerate and regain altitude when the cockpit altitude warning system sounded.
They were able to avoid a collision with the water at the last second and looped over Thonon once they regained altitude.
On a second attempt the pilots were able to land the plane.
This graphic shows how close the easyJet plane came to crashing
If the plane had continued on a downward trajectory it would have crashed into the lake within 30 seconds.
The Swiss Safety Investigation Service (SESE) said: ‘During the approach to runway 22, the aircraft descended significantly below the glideslope and the flight crew initiated a go-around.’
SESE said it had opened an investigation into the incident.
It classified the incident as ‘serious’, and said the aircraft sunk well below the ‘descent line’ during its approach.
A descent line is the angle an aircraft needs to maintain a safe height as it approaches the runway.
An expert said the geographical features of Lake Geneva could have played a part in the quick descent.
They told Blick: ‘The control tower instructed the aircraft to follow one of the shortest approaches, which runs between Gland and Rolle.’
They said this forces crews to descend quickly rather than passing the Jura mountains, which flights from the UK usually fly over.
The pilots were stood down for a short time but are now flying again.
An easyJet spokesperson said: ‘We are fully supporting the investigation in line with procedures.
‘At no point was the safety of those onboard compromised.
‘The safety and wellbeing of passengers and crew is always easyJet’s highest priority.’
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