...While FAA Looks At Bird-Strike Prevention
While all that gear should theoretically be able to keep most pilots out of the weeds, terrain isn't the only thing that can ruin your day. The FAA has just wrapped up tests on a portable radar unit that can track flocks of birds around airports. The radar has a three-mile range and is designed to give fair warning of potential strikes on aircraft departing and arriving at airports. The tests were done at Dallas/Fort Worth International and are now being reviewed. The portable system would be part of the National Bird Strike Advisory System. The system is designed to provide near-real-time warning of the risk of bird strikes by combining radar data and database information on bird strikes. And just to punctuate how useful this kind of stuff might be, remember that only a couple of weeks ago an American Airlines MD-80 had to return to O'Hare right after takeoff after pureeing a Canada goose or two in its left engine. The engine disintegrated, raining debris over the suburbs and causing an on-board fire. The flight got back to O'Hare safely.