Two flights operated by United Airlines (UA) departing from Houston were forced to return after the bird strike. The incident during takeoff resulted in the planes being redirected back to their origin airport for safety reasons.
United Airlines is not the sole airline to be involved in such an incident. Earlier, American Airlines (AA), FedEx (FX), Flydubai (FZ) and many more were recently involved in the Bird strike. Furthermore, there is a rise in such incidents across the world.
Two United Planes involved in Bird Strike Landed safely
On Tuesday, two United Airlines flights – Flight 2086 heading to Las Vegas and Flight 847 bound for Santiago, Chile – were forced to return to Houston after colliding with a flock of birds during takeoff.
Both planes were redirected back to Bush Intercontinental Airport in Texas at around 10 p.m. due to safety concerns. KHOU 11 reported that the birds collided with the planes, prompting the pilots to take immediate action.
Air traffic audio from Flight 847 captured the crew’s reaction when they heard a “loud pop,” alerting them that something was amiss. The pilots took swift action and followed standard procedures to return safely to the airport.
Why did this happen?
According to one of the pilots on the United Airlines flight that collided with a flock of birds, when the plane levelled off at 4,000 feet, there was a loud pop, and something could be felt.
None of the three pilots was able to identify the object that hit the plane and were unsure if it was a bird. The pilot speculated that it could have been a bird or even a drone. But they could not confirm.
Further, the priority was to ensure the safety of the passengers and the crew. Subsequently, to return the plane to the airport for a thorough inspection.
Action by United Pilots After Bird Strike
The pilots on the United Airlines flights were surprised by the impact. They immediately decided to turn the planes around for an emergency landing at Bush Intercontinental Airport.
The data from the Las Vegas-bound flight indicated that it had been in the air for approximately 30 minutes before it reversed course for its emergency landing.
Footage captured at the airport shows firefighters rushing to one of the flights after the incident.
It is common for a plane’s engine to catch fire after birds are sucked in, but in this case, the engine seemed unaffected. Fortunately, neither incident reported injuries, and both planes were thoroughly inspected and cleared for take-off the following day.
An American Airlines Boeing 737 engine recently caught fire after hitting a flock of geese just 25 minutes after it took off from Ohio’s John Glenn International Airport.
A video shows the flight bound for Phoenix making a U-Turn for an emergency landing at the Columbus airport. As flames and smoke emanated from the right engine. Luckily, the plane made a safe landing, and no injuries were reported.
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