Published on : Wednesday, October 25, 2017
Virgin Australia Flight VA-319 was departing Melbourne for Brisbane when it reported ‘excessive vibration’ in its left engine. Thereafter it decided to return to the airport.
Then crew members of the flight told the air traffic controllers as it leveled off at 5,000 feet that the Boeing 737’s number one engine had collided with both an eagle and a rabbit that was clutched firmly in its claws.
The airplane had been carrying 174 passengers and landed safely 17 minutes after its departure.
The latest data from FlightRadar24.com portrays how the ascent of the plane was curtailed around 4,500 feet before it finally planned a tight loop and returned to Melbourne.
FlightRadar24 said that the flight was cancelled, after that.
This is quite a rare event associated with an emergency landing incident.
But it not the only bizarre incident that was witnessed by the flight of Virgin Australia. For, in 1987, a leading news media agency had reported about a mid-air collision between an Alaska Airlines aircraft and a fish. The manager of Juneau airport, Paul Browers told the media that once the aircraft was assessed, the authorities discovered just a ‘greasy spot with some scales but no damage’.
As per the pilot, the impact had occurred at about 400 feet as the Boeing 737 climbed out of the Alaska airport and dashed with a bald eagle clutching a fish in its talons. The eagle was capable of escaping without any injuries.
The British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA) said that such events are not much dangerous.
They went on to add that aircrafts are specially designed so that they are able to withstand bird strikes and pilots go through intensive training processes that equips them sufficiently to deal with incidents like a bird strike, mentioned Stephen Landells who is the flight safety specialist of BALPA.