Author Topic: Birds smash into planes more than 40 times a day, claims FAA  (Read 2526 times)

Offline KB4TEZ

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Birds smash into planes more than 40 times a day, claims FAA
« on: February 07, 2019, 10:44:49 AM »

Even a decade after the “Miracle on the Hudson,” the rate of birds smashing into airplanes is at an all-time high.According to a USA Today analysis, Federal Aviation Administration data reveals an incredible 14,661 plane collisions with wildlife in 2018 — an average of about 40 per day.

Over the past two decades, 106 civilians have died as a direct result of wildlife strikes, according to researchers. Annual damage cost is estimated at $1.2 billion annually.

Causes for the terrifying increase have been blamed on changing migratory patterns, quieter aircraft and more flights.

Fowl crashes seldom made headlines prior to 2009, when pilot Chesley Sullenberger was forced to make a dramatic emergency landing on the Hudson River after striking Canada geese.

Since the day Sullenberger guided his 155 passengers to safety on Jan. 15, 2009, the FAA has improved its voluntary reporting system.

“That number has certainly been steadily increasing ever since the ‘Miracle on the Hudson’” says Chris Oswald, the vice president of the Airports Council International-North America. “A lot of that — and I can only say a lot because it’s hard to know — has to do with outreach activities.”

Only 2,000 bird strikes were reported in 1990; nine years later, the rate had tripled. And in 2013, the number reached nearly 12,000, before spiking to almost 14,000 the following year.

While not as newsworthy as Sullenberger’s heroic undertaking, a Nov. 26 JetBlue flight in Portland, Ore., struck a Canada goose following liftoff. The passengers and crew felt the impact, which made a loud thud, but the pilot assumed the plane had suffered a blown tire. After circling the airport for half an hour, the crew noticed the tires were intact but the flaps had been damaged. When they landed, they discovered a 6-to-8-inch hole in the right flap and a foot-long engine dent.