Close call for pilot after a bird strike in Arizona - Tucson News Now

Close call for pilot after a bird strike in Arizona

Posted: Updated:
Photo courtesy of City of Show Low Photo courtesy of City of Show Low

By Dan Marries - email

SHOW LOW, AZ (KOLD) - It was smooth flying for a pilot over the skies of Arizona until a bird came crashing through the front windshield of his twin engine cargo plane.

The impact left a bloody mess in the cockpit and forced an emergency landing in Show Low.

The impact shattered the pilot's side windscreen.

The pilot, Roger Wutke, suffered minor cuts and bruises to his face and splattered bird parts across the inside of the aircraft said Ian Gregor, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman.

Wutke was the only person on the plane, an Ameriflight Beechcraft C99. He was taken to a local hospital for stitches to his face.

Pictures taken after the bird strike show the devastating impact. There was a large hole in the windscreen and the force knocked the sunglasses and headset off the pilot but amazingly Wutke kept his cool and landed the plane safely. The FAA is investigating the incident.

The Ameriflight bird strike happened only two days after a Delta Airlines jet flying to Salt Lake City struck a flock of birds.

That flight was forced to turn around and land at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport where it originated.

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