Bird strike aborts Virgin Atlantic flight

Lagos- Nigeria (PANA) -- A Virgin Atlantic's Lagos-London flight was aborted shortly before take-off last Friday, after a bird went into one of the engines of the Boeing 747-200 aircraft, an official of the airline said in Lagos Wednesday.
Lagos Station Manager, Peter Bary to PANA that the incident happened while the plane was still on the runway, dismissing claims in the local media that the plane had to make an emergency landing due to the problem.
He explained that an engine test conducted on the aircraft after the "bird's strike" was negative, hence the plane could not depart for London.
Bary said the British-registered airline brought in another plane from London to take more than 200 stranded passengers on Saturday, while the plane was flown to London for an engine change.
"It was an act of God," he said of the incident, which he described as a "fairly regular occurrence" in the aviation industry.
"There is nothing anyone can do about it," the airline official said.
Virgin Atlantic formally launched its Lagos-London flight in July.
A dual-designation agreement signed by the Nigerian and British governments in April paved the way for the privately-owned British airline to join British Airways on the route.
Nigeria Airways and a yet-to-be designated indigenous airline will take the Nigerian slots on the lucrative route.

29 august 2001 14:21:00

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