Bird Strike Damages Aero’s B737 Aircraft Blade
Aero Contractors’ Boeing 737-500 with the registration number 5N-BKR encountered bird strike on take-off at the Port Harcourt International Airport (PHIA), Megwa to head for Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja yesterday, leading to a damage of the aircraft’s blade.
The Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Capt. Musa Nuhu,
who confirmed the incident, said the pilot of Aero Contractor Flight NIG382 acted professionally in returning to base after it encountered bird strike on take-off, explaining that the pilot made a circuit and returned to base within eight minutes after the incident. He said the action of the pilot was in order.
The aircraft had departed PHIA for Abuja with 91 souls onboard; 85 passengers and six crew members at 2:06pm and returned to base at 2:14pm.
Nuhu said no life was at risk because of the incident, explaining that the airline brought another aircraft to airlift the passengers to Abuja within 90 minutes of the incident, and that the damaged part of the aircraft was undergoing repairs in Port Harcourt.
He said: “Boeing 737-500 aircraft with the registration number: 5N-BKR belonging to Aero Contractors departed Port Harcourt to Abuja, but, during takeoff, it had a bird strike and the pilot continued the take-off, made a circuit and returned to land.
“That is what is supposed to be done. Pilots are trained for that. At the point he had the bird strike, he could not abort the takeoff. So, he continued with the takeoff and returned to base. They restarted the engine and discovered that some parts of the blades were damaged. Within 90 minutes, Aero Contractors came with a different aircraft to rescue the passengers.
“As we speak, maintenance is going on to fix the damaged blade and when they finish, NCAA inspectors will inspect it and certify it if all the parameters; engines, blades and others are okay, they will be released for flight.”