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FAA: SRQ has 378 bird strikes

MANATEE — Planes struck birds an average of 20 times a year at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport since 1990, but none resulted in human fatalities, according to a database made fully public today.

Pilots reported 378 bird strikes at SRQ between Jan. 1, 1990 and Dec. 31, 2008, the latest date contained in the Federal Aviation Administration’s Bird Strike database.

The FAA made the entire database publicly available Friday, after withdrawing a proposal to keep the data confidential. Portions of the database have been publicly available since the FAA began collecting data in 1990.

According to the database, nine bird strikes at SRQ resulted in serious damage to the airplane. Among them:

Ÿ A Delta Air Lines jet aborted takeoff after hitting several laughing gulls on May 12, 2008.

Ÿ A US Airways jet sustained severe engine damage, but landed safely, after striking ospreys or turkey vultures while landing at SRQ on March 17, 2006.

Ÿ A US Airways jet that had taken off from SRQ made a precautionary landing at Tampa International Airport after hitting several unknown types of birds on July 10, 2002.

The database also showed 321 reported bird strikes at Tampa International during the 19-year period, with 12 resulting in significant damage to the airplane but no human fatalities.

The searchable database, compiled by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, is available at wildlife.pr.erau.edu/public/index.html.

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