Reuters reports that a SpiceJet Boeing 737-800 aircraft struck a buffalo during take-off in Surat, India at the Surat Airport (STV). While no passengers or crew were injured in the incident, the plane suffered “substantial damages” in the collision which took the life of the buffalo. The animal had seemingly made its way through a break in the airport’s security fences and onto the runway.
In the United States, the FAA reports about 142,000 wildlife strikes with civil aircraft in U.S. between 1990 and 2013 (about 11,000 strikes at 650 airports in 2013). During that time, such strikes caused 25 human fatalities and 279 injuries. attributed to wildlife strikes with US civil aircraft.
While 97% of all strikes with civil aircraft in U.S. involve birds, strikes with other animals such as deer, coyotes, turtles, skunks, bats, and alligators have also been reported. White-tailed deer are the most commonly struck non-bird species, 1990-2012.
Sure, birds can fly OVER fences and are kept away from runways via other deterrent methods, but a buffalo!? Yikes.
Does the lack of proper fencing security at airports, especially overseas, concern you while flying?
Or does it even cross your mind (or will it now)?
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