Local News

Bird damages UNC medical helicopter

Posted January 16, 2009 9:32 p.m. EST

— A bird hit a UNC medical helicopter earlier this week, causing some damage to the machine.

The helicopter was transporting a patient to UNC Hospitals on Jan. 12 when the crew noticed they were hit by something, officials said.

When the helicopter landed, the remains of a bird were found in the tail section of the aircraft, which was damaged.

The helicopter is being repaired and has been out of service since the incident.

A bird strike may have caused US Airways Flight 1549, which was heading to from New York to Charlotte, to crash into the Hudson River on Thursday.

Nearly 60,000 bird strikes have been reported nationally since 1990.

Raleigh-Durham International Airport hasn't had a confirmed bird strike in 30 years, officials said. Crews use loud pyrotechnics shot out of a gun to keep fowl away.

In the spring, the Department of Agriculture helps move geese to another location.

Some airports use border collies to clear away birds.