Emirates flight lands safely after hitting flamingos in Mumbai

Emirates flight lands safely after hitting flamingos in Mumbai
Emirates Airline planes are seen at Dubai International Airport in Dubai, United Arab Emirates February 15, 2019. REUTERS/Christopher Pike/File Photo

MUMBAI, May 22 (Reuters) - An Emirates flight landed safely in Mumbai late on Monday night after colliding with a flock of flamingos shortly before touchdown, damaging the plane and leaving several birds dead, the airline said on Wednesday.

The Boeing 777 aircraft, flying from Dubai to Mumbai, hit the flock around 300 metres (1,000 ft) from the ground, leaving 39 of the birds dead, the Times of India newspaper reported.

“Emirates can confirm that EK508 from Dubai to Mumbai on 20 May was involved in a bird strike incident upon landing,” an Emirates spokesperson told Reuters.

“The aircraft landed safely and all passengers and crew disembarked without injury, however sadly a number of flamingos were lost and Emirates is cooperating with the authorities on the matter,” the spokesperson said.

Images in local media showed officials carrying bloodied flamingos, which migrate to the city every winter from the neighbouring state of Gujarat.

The Emirates aircraft was damaged in the incident and the return flight, scheduled to depart for Dubai on May 20, was cancelled, the spokesperson said.

(Reporting by Shilpa Jamkhandikar and Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Christopher Cushing)


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