Airlines Mistrust Indonesian Controllers

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Some airline pilots in the southern skies have been ordered by their employers to drive on the right side of the road. Qantas pilots have been told to fly to the right of airways in Indonesia to avoid other airplanes that could be (read: at least once have been) on a head-on collision course, and now Air New Zealand is considering a similar policy, The Dominion Post reported on Tuesday. Two near-collisions in Indonesian airspace in the last year were avoided only because the pilots were warned by their onboard systems and took evasive action. Last March, a Qantas 767 was climbing to 36,000 feet and was put on a collision course with an Air New Zealand 767 cruising at that altitude. Both crews responded to onboard alerts and passed each other by less than 400 feet. A similar incident in the same area last June involved two Qantas airplanes.