A bird collision with aircraft is known as a «bird strike». A bird or a flock of birds that suddenly rises from a runway or surrounding area may collide with incoming or departing aircraft and cause the aircraft to crash or may result in the loss of human life. Modern jet engines have the capability of surviving an ingestion of a bird. The highest risk of the bird strike is during the takeoff and landing, at low altitudes, which is in the vicinity of the airports.
Although most bird strikes do not result in crashes, they may cause expensive structural and mechanical damage of the aircraft (e.g. engine or fuselage).
Bird strikes became a serious hazard with the development and introduction of jet aircraft. The new turbine engines use light-weight mechanical parts which can be easily damaged. Faster speeds mean birds have less time to react to approaching aircraft. A bird strike might cause a cracked windshield, engine failure, hydraulic problems, delays and aircraft control problems. If an aircraft experiences a bird strike a pilot can decide to return to the aerodrome immediately, divert to the alternate or make an emergency landing. A controller has to assist a plane experiencing a bird strike. He has to inform a supervisor, clear a long final if a pilot requests, check the RW or recommend a suitable
aerodrome for emergency landing if it is necessary.
Many airports are often located along migratory routes used by birds. Moreover airports provide birds with food, water and cover. It is very important to reduce bird hazard at an airport that's why special ways and methods are used to frighten birds away.
Bird frightening programs include variable scaring and dispersing measures, such as trained bird dispersal patrol teams which provide immediate protection for the aircraft within the airport perimeter. The patrol teams use special equipment, such as radio-equipped vehicles, shotguns, frightening devices with bird distress calls, ammunition, automatic gas exploders,
racket bombs, automatic traps.
Distress calls are sounds produced by birds under stress.
The calls can be recorded on tape cassettes and played through a loudspeaker located on the patrol vehicle.
Shooting is often less effective because of the small number of birds killed, it is not practical as a method for reducing large numbers of birds.
5. Read the text again and answer the following questions:
Q What is a bird strike?
Q At what stages of flight do bird strikes occur most?
Q Why are airports so attractive to birds?
Q What measures are taken to frighten the birds away?
6. Complete the gaps with the appropriate words from the box. Make all necessary changes.
3 June 1995.An Air France CONCORDE, at about 10 feet AGL while _______________at John F. Kennedy International Airport (NY), ______________1 or 2 Canadian ___________into № 3 engine. The engine _________________an uncontained failure. Shrapnel from the № 3 engine ________________the № 4 engine and cut several hydraulic lines and control cables. The pilot was able to land the plane ______________but the runway was closed for several hours. Damage to the Concorde was ______________at over $7 million.
7. Listen and check your answers.
8. Listen to the four recordings and report on each one using the following questions as a plan:
1. At what phases of flight did bird strikes take place most?
2. What aircraft components were damaged by birds?
3. What actions were taken by pilots?
4. What were the consequences of bird strikes?
9. Complete the gaps with the appropriate words from the box. Make all necessary changes.
damage / multiple / roll / duck / nacelle / replace / abort / repairs / bang
24 June 2005.During take-off ____________ at Subic Bay (Philippines), one engine on an AIRBUS-310 had ______________bird strikes. A loud _________________was heard followed by vibration and pull to the right. The pilot _______________take-off. The fan blades were badly _______________. A large section of nose cowl was torn from _________________. The engine and cowling were ______________. The birds were identified as Philippine _______________. The time out of service was 4 days. The cost of _________________was estimated at $9,456,000.