Bird hits CAL windshield on Brac to GC flight

| 13/09/2021 | 14 Comments
Cayman News Service
Cayman Airways Max 8 aircraft wing tip (Photo by Paul Tibbetts)

(CNS): Passengers aboard Sunday night’s Cayman Airways flight from Cayman Brac to Grand Cayman had an unnerving moment when the B737-8 aircraft turned back shortly after takeoff because a bird had struck the windshield. The captain did not declare an emergency as the windscreen was not damaged and the plane was functioning normally, but out of an abundance of caution, CAL said, the pilot returned the aircraft to the Charles Kirkconnell Airport, landing safely at 6:06pm, in order to have it thoroughly checked before continuing the flight.

All 122 passengers remained on board while the airline’s maintenance and engineering department conducted a thorough inspection of the aircraft for primary, secondary and hidden damage. The engineers concluded that the aircraft was free of damage, and the flight departed at 7:36pm for an 8:05pm arrival on Grand Cayman, airline officials said in a release.

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Category: Local News, Travel

Comments (14)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I wonder what would have occured if the bird was caught in the engine.

    • Anonymous says:

      Nothing – they’re tested (as are the windshield panels) to ensure they’ll survive multiple bird strikes. You want to try flying a light aircraft into a flock of birds – that’s interesting but apart from all the blood and feathers the only damage was a small dent in the leading edge of the right wing.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Did you guys put the birds under quarantine ?

  3. WBW. Czar. says:

    The plane could have just continued on to GC under 10k feet and everyone would’ve gotten to GC on time. What a pair of Mary’s CAL is.

  4. Anonymous says:

    It was laughing so hard that CAL bought the max

  5. Anonymous says:

    The Bird is the Word!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Poor bird

  7. Anonymous says:

    Capt’ Sully on board , great work by the CAL crews.

  8. Anonymous says:

    There is a pond there you know.

    It was there before the airport was built.

    The pond attracts and has many birds and I don’t hear the gunshots going off to scare them away.

    Sad, but just a matter of time, BOOM!

    • Anonymous says:

      I live right next to the airport and can assure you culling and other methods are in place. I’ve often seen & hear what appears to be some sort of Air Cannon that is extremely loud and goes off quite frequently.

      • Anonymous says:

        So let’s see how that goes then.

        Ponds, birds, planes and airports don’t live in harmony.

        Only a matter of time, BOOM.

        Sad, ghastly, terrifying but is very likely.

      • Anonymous says:

        2:54 pm, you are sure you are talking about the Brac Airport ?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Well we know it wasn’t a Ching Ching.

    • Anonymous says:

      And the article doesn’t state at what phase, location, and altitude of the aircraft departure the bird strike took place.

      The Cayman Islands Airports Authority has an active aerodrome operations safety team. It will be good for them to share publicly the details of what the investigation reveals, what countermeasures are being taken to minimise the risk of repetition, and whether there are any new protocols developed as a result for air carrier and general aviation airmen using the Cayman Brac airport as well as for the airport operations staff too.

      A bird strike that didn’t damage a Boeing 737’s windscreen might have caused a much more significant problem had it occurred with a much smaller and lighter private aircraft so the more we know about the incident, the better we can mitigate such risks. Aviation today is so much safer than decades ago, because investigations of past accidents and incidents over the years, has resulted in new knowledge which in turn produced new countermeasures and implemented new protocols. The value of these investigations is therefore in the sharing of the learning and the actions taken as a result.

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