A British Airways plane grounded here following a bird strike, should have left Antigua last night for Gatwick airport after passing inspection by three of the carrier’s London-based engineers.
The flight, originally scheduled to leave on Tuesday, had to be abandoned and the service leaving Barbados for Britain that same evening rerouted to Antigua to pick up passengers.
Antigua & Barbuda Airport Authority Operations Director Edward Gilkes confirmed the grounding.
While there were reports that a bird had gotten into one of the jet engines, Gilkes said nothing had been found during inspection to indicate this.
Efforts to get details from British Airways officials here were unsuccessful but a source in Barbados confirmed for The Daily OBSERVER that there was a bird strike and said it was a matter of determining which part of the aircraft had been hit.
“Checks have confirmed there was no damage to the aircraft. Precautionary measures had to be taken because damage is not always visible, so we use specialised equipment to inspect to see if there is any damage, particularly in or near the engine,” the source said.
A bird strike or bird aircraft strike hazard is a collision between a bird(s) and a plane.