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Birds vs. Planes

April 7th, 2009 by flanews

Airplane collisions with birds are up 62 percent from the mid 90s.

Monday a flight leaving the Orlando airport made an emergency landing after it struck an eagle. In January a plane landed in the Hudson River after slamming into a flock of geese. Representative Scott Plankon is sponsoring legislation to give airport ground crews legal protection when clearing birds from runways. Plankons says his bill would protect airline employees from prosecution if they accidently harm a protected species.

Some of the depredation methods that they use involve dangerous devices in some ways. They use sound cannons, paintball guns, pole shockers and if they accidentally harm certain types of wildlife they can potentially be prosecuted. So this legislation basically protects the airport personnel while they try to keep the flying public safe, said Plankon.

The legislation passed its committee stops and is headed to the House floor for a final vote.

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