This week we take you into the cockpit of a Boeing 777 with an unusual and rare video, taken when a Boeing 747 overtook a Boeing 737 over Baghdad (Iraq). The scene was filmed by Captain Sreekumar with his cell phone at an altitude of 33,000 feet (10,000 metres).
Even though both commercial aircraft seem to be very close to each other, in reality it’s not quite true. The 747 is actually at 35,000 feet (10,600 metres) and the 737 is 2,000 feet higher (600 metres).
"The minimum vertical distance between two aircraft must, according to the standards of the International Civil Aviation Organization Organization (ICAO), be 1,000 feet (300 metres)", says Philippe Grossi, Air Traffic Services Operational Management, Toulouse airport (south-west France).
So there is nothing abnormal or dangerous here. The uniqueness of this sequence is the coincidence of both aircraft flight plans at that moment – altitude apart. In this video, we finally see that the 747 does not take long to overtake the 737, and for good reason, its cruising speed is around 50 mph (80 km/h) faster.