Plane engines make a lot of noise, but then there’s the awful noise it reportedly makes when a bunch of birds hit. Passengers on a Delta flight yesterday had a bit of a scare, after their plane was likely hit by a bird strike on the way to L.A. The crew made a successful emergency landing at JFK.
“On takeoff, the airplane had a likely bird strike,” said a Delta statement, according to ABC News. “As a precaution, the captain elected to return to JFK. The flight landed without incident, and we’re working on reaccomodating the passengers.”
A CNN correspondent on the flight tweeted that the cabin filled with smoke after the bird strike, and commended the captain and crew for “a quick turnaround & landing.”
Another passenger posted a YouTube video, and said, “That was the scariest thing I have ever done in my life,” he said. “[The] plane shook, I thought we were coming down.”
It came as a scary shock for passengers, perhaps, but the audio recording of the incident shows that the pilot was totally calm while talking with air traffic controllers.
“All is well,” the pilot told the controllers coordinating the landing and response. “They can take their time and everybody can be calm out there.”
Animal strikes are up from 1,793 reported in 1990 to 9,622 in 2010, and birds were involved 92.7% of the time. Most of the time, those strikes happen when the plane is at less than 500 feet of elevation.
So don’t worry everyone, go about your flying as usual.