224 planes hit birds, dogs at Goa airport since 2014

PANAJI: Passenger planes that take off or land on the face have a good chance of bumping into birds and other animals in Dabolim. According to data shared by the Indian Navy with the state government, 224 incidents have been reported at the navy-controlled air base since April 2014.

Aircraft have hit kites, pigeons, lapwing, crows, peacocks, owls and even dogs.

While 99% of the incidents involved commercial airplanes, the Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, Texas, light combat aircraft (LCA) also suffered a fright. However, the data does not mention the incident that occurred on November 16, 2019, when a MiG 29 KUB fighter plane crashed after encountering a flock of birds.

According to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), about 90% of bird collisions occur during takeoff or landing. At the time, most of the incidents occurred during takeoff, but rarely resulted in significant damage to the aircraft, according to data shared by Prime Minister Pramod Sawant. The data also revealed that of the 224 instances in which the plane hit an animal or bird, only seven resulted in damage to the aircraft's engines.

Commenting that the Indian Navy and those responsible for addressing the risk, Sawant said: The Indian Navy has reported that measures have been implemented to mitigate the danger of birds or animals.

Among the factors that put Goa airport at risk is its proximity to residential areas where the dumping of outdoor garbage is rampant. Sawant also recognized the threat posed by construction activities around the airport. The Indian Navy has identified five buildings that have been built without obtaining their permission, he said.

The rules and notifications of the government of India apply uniformly to all airports in the country, Sawant said in his response to the state legislature.