The Flight That Just Couldn’t Catch A Break, Every Time They Tried To Take Off They Hit A Bird

LOT Polish airlines flight LO8625 was supposed to fly from Poznan, Poland to holiday destination Palma Mallorca in Spain on Tuesday. But try as it might it couldn’t catch a break. It kept trying to take off, and every time it did it hit a bird and hard to start over.

The Embraer ERJ-195 aircraft was scheduled to leave at 6:15 a.m. but struck a bird on takeoff from Poznan airport’s runway 28. The flight crew “continued the departure at first, the crew subsequently levelled off at FL240 and decided to return” and landed safely 35 minutes after departure.

Diverted LOT Polish ERJ, Credit: Ian Gratton via Wikimedia Commons

Now, I’ve been on planes that suffered bird strikes. It’s a tense experience but losing a single engine isn’t a big deal. Still I’ve held my breath until we’re back on the ground – which is usually quickly because there’s no vectoring, the plane gets cleared for a direct return. After an inspection the plane usually returns to the terminal and gets taken out of service for a longer investigation.

In this case though the aircraft was checked over. The engine that suffered the bird strike was tested. And the plane was returned to service. So a couple of hours later the flight departed again for Palma Mallorca. And it suffered another bird strike.

This time instead of turning around the flight crew ceased its climb out and leveled at 19,000 feet and then diverted to Warsaw, landing 45 minutes after departure.

In Warsaw there are plenty of LOT Polish planes, the ERJ-195 was taken out of service, and passengers continued on their journey with a replacement aircraft.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Careful, three bird strikes and you’re out, no fowl balls. Don’t you know that’s ill eagle? These delays are a great birden on the passengers I would think. How unpheasant it must be to have to take off and land twice without reaching your destination. I would go stork raven mad. Do you think they’ll get out on the next try? It seems like a bit of ostrich.

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