Bird Strike Mitigation
By Jeff White, M.S., MTSP-C, FP-C, Director of Safety, HealthNet Aeromedical Services
Spring is here, and warmer temperatures means the risk of migratory birds is on the rise.
Along with an increased chance of bird strikes comes maintenance issues with birds nesting in open areas of aircraft.
The FAA has worked with many agencies to create risk mitigation and data collection techniques to prepare crews when flying this time of year. Date shows 66%-68% of bird strikes occur during the enroute portion of a flight, 8%-9% on approach phase and 9%-10% during climb phase. Elevations of 500’ and below is known as the bird rich zone while 93% of bird strikes occur below 3500’. To date, there has only been one known fatal HEMS accident due to a bird strike.
Here are tools available to you to assist with live tracking of birds:
Avian Hazard Advisory System
Please remember this time of year, visors and sleeves down and eyes out and always scanning. Bird strikes can occur at any time, so diligence is key.