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Jet Makes Emergency Landing At Kennedy After Striking Gull On Takeoff From Nearby Airport

A plane that took off from a suburban airport Friday made an emergency landing in New York City with a bird’s carcass “impaled” on its nose.

JetBlue Flight 671, headed from Westchester County Airport to West Palm Beach, Fla., landed safely at Kennedy International Airport 25 minutes after the bird strike, the Federal Aviation Administration said. Passengers said they did not realize there was a problem until the pilot made an announcement.

“There was blood all over the windshield,” Mike Stewart of Fairfield, Conn., told the New York Daily News. “The bird’s body was stuck to the nose of the plane. It was impaled on the nose!”

JetBlue offered passengers a choice of ground transportation back to White Plains, N.Y., or finding other flights to West Palm Beach.

The FAA reported 157 bird strikes at Kennedy and 118 at New York’s LaGuardia Airport since 2013. With many airports in the city and suburbs close to water, flocks of Canada geese, gulls and other birds are a concern.

In January 2009, a US Airways flight from LaGuardia to Charlotte, N.C., was damaged when it hit a flock of Canada geese. The pilot, Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, became a national hero when he crash-landed the plane in the Hudson River off midtown Manhattan, allowing the passengers and crew to be evacuated without any loss of life.

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