How a pelican’s brief encounter with a plane led to a sticky end

Posted: May 13, 2009 in AVIATION

As pilot Hannes Arch moved into
second position in an exciting air race,he had no choice but to try a
risky overtake of his nearest competitor.

the pelican came off a distinct second best, with his leisurely flight
brought to an abrupt end by the sound of roaring propellers and a quick

The grisly moment was captured during the last round of the Red Bull air race in San Diego.

article-0-04E3F4A6000005DC-451_634x.jpg Plane Collides With Pelican At Airshow picture by Shusril

Free as a bird: The pelican was enjoying a leisurely flight past a
pylon in the Red Bull Race.
Sadly, Austrian pilot Hannes Arch wanted
the same airspace was closing in fast… 

The pilot and the pelican both
wanted to occupy the same air space, rounding the top of one of the
pylons marking out the above-ground track.

poor creature was quickly torn to pieces by the collision, and Pilot
Arch was also left feeling only slightly less shattered by the
incident, which in many instances can bring down an aircraft.

pilot didn’t alter his course and continued to the finish line –
although he lost his gold medal and came in third, blaming the loss on
the bird strike.

His plane was left with with a blood-covered hole on the right side of his plane’s tail.

article-0-04E3F746000005DC-65_634x7.jpg Plane Collides With Pelican At Airshow picture by Shusril

Sticky end: The poor pelican was butchered by the plane after they collided

Pilot Arch said: ‘It was bad luck, but good luck that I was able to fly to the finish line.

‘I was having a really good run and then I had a bird strike that distracted me.

‘I was off line after that. The bird
strike nearly tore off my horizontal stabiliser. It was bad luck but
good luck that I was able to fly to the finish line.’

This is not the first time this year a mid-air collision between bird and plane has led to dramatic images.

Only four months ago pilot Chesley ‘Sully’ Sullenberger landed an Airbus A320 on New York’s Hudson River following a collision with a flock of birds.

phpjN1NxCjpeg.jpg Plane Collides With Pelican At Airshow picture by Shusril

The damage is visible on the tail.

  1. milk says:

    why in HELL would you put YELLOW text over a white background?? it’s literally impossible to read. totally impossible. fail.

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