A recent air proximity alert, AIRPROX REPORT No 2015005, has served as a reminder to pilots to check for sites launching meteorological balloons along their route. It also reminds balloon operators of the need to get appropriate permission for their high altitude balloon launch.
The report was made by a pilot of a SAAB 2000 who reported being on a descent into Scatsta. When passing FL70, the crew observed a white Met balloon. The pilot reported that they first had visual contact approximately 5nm away. The pilot elected to take a turn of 20° to avoid the balloon. The weather balloon passed down their right-hand side at a distance of 400m.
For the full report go to http://www.airproxboard.org.uk/docs/423/2015005.pdf