Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Eagle sucked into plane's engine

A plane was forced to land after an eagle was sucked into its engine

An eagle has been sucked into an Alaska Airlines jet's engine as the aircraft was taking off, causing the flight to be aborted.

Seattle-bound Flight 68 was approaching take-off speed when the eagle went into the left engine in Sitka, Alaska, airline spokesman Paul McElroy said.

None of the 134 passengers or five crew members was hurt. The bird collision automatically shut off the plane's engine.

Mr McElroy said the jet braked to a stop about 3,000 feet from the end of the 6,500ft runway, which ends at the water's edge. The plane then taxied back to the terminal with its single working engine.

The airline was sending a replacement plane from Anchorage to continue the flight.

Meanwhile, aircraft mechanics were inspecting the sidelined Boeing 737-400 for damage.

Mr McElroy said he did not know how often such bird strikes occurred.

"It's certainly not unheard of but it is unusual," he said.

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