DGCA announces guidelines to prevent bird hits at airports after recent bird attacks

New Delhi: The aviation regulator DGCA on Saturday issued guidelines that include conducting routine patrols in random patterns and notifying pilots anytime there is any wildlife activity in order to reduce occurrences of planes colliding with birds and other animals at airports throughout India.

Various instances of bird strikes have occurred during the past few weeks. After taking a bird hit on August 4, Go First’s aeroplane to Chandigarh made a Thursday return to Ahmedabad.

On June 19, shortly after taking off from the Patna airport, an engine on a SpiceJet plane heading for Delhi and carrying 185 passengers caught fire. The plane then made an emergency landing. A bird hit and caused the engine to malfunction.

All airport operators are urged to assess their wildlife hazard management plans in order to find any gaps and ensure that they are strictly followed in and around aerodromes, according to the regulator’s Saturday circular.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) requested that the airports do an assessment of the wildlife danger to aircraft and rank them accordingly.

It required a process for the airports to keep track of and document information on animal movement.

Additionally, the document recommended that airports have a process in place to alert pilots “in response to any major animal concentration or activity both on and in the area of the airport.”

According to it, the wildlife hazard management program’s main component is routine patrols.

In order to prevent wildlife from learning or growing used to the timing of patrols, it was suggested that the patrols be conducted in random patterns rather than following a set route.

“Aerodrome operators are directed to forward monthly action taken report on the implementation of wildlife hazard management programme and also provide wildlife strike data…by 7th of every month,” it noted.

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