Imagine being on a plane twenty seconds from a midair collision tonight a passenger on a flight from Hawaii to Los Angeles turned detective. He was sure they had been a close call at 30000 feet. And... See More
Imagine being on a plane twenty seconds from a midair collision tonight a passenger on a flight from Hawaii to Los Angeles turned detective. He was sure they had been a close call at 30000 feet. And it was right outside his window and he was right here's ABC's senior national correspondent Jim model. 30000 feet above the Hawaiian Islands to passenger jets -- more than 400 people aboard. On a collision course forcing the pilots to take dramatic evasive action there is a scary experience. Passenger screenings there is a cop on the back that fell down. -- young pastor behind me started crying towns and an Internet blog writer found that as the jets barreled towards disaster an automatic radar alarm -- T cast sounded in both cockpits. By then the two passenger jets were heading directly at each other. Eight miles away from possible impact. When the collision alert sounded and the united jet went into emergency descent dialing 800 feet avoiding tragedy. -- leveled out. The flight attendant actually got on the loudspeaker and told us that the pilot had. Maneuver the aircraft to avoid another plane in our flight path and a flight simulator in suburban Washington a pilot trainer showed me how -- -- -- -- Just now learning. So the pilot -- take action. Soon as you're drafting exactly. How close was this call -- airline -- cruise speed of 500 miles per hour the two planes were heading towards each other at a thousand miles per hour. Eight miles apart -- the pilots 125 seconds to react. Tonight an FAA NTSB team is in Hawaii to investigate what forced a split second. Lifesaving maneuver. Jim -- ABC news Washington.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.