Saturday, February 7, 2009

It's a Good Thing Big Bird Can't Fly

In an article about the people who try to keep wildlife off the runways at San Francisco airport, Katharine Mieszkowski mentions an interesting fact.

Commercial jet engines must be designed to withstand a single four-pound bird being sucked into them.

Even though birds are generally light for their size, that's not a lot, as the article points out.

Pelicans or geese, which can weigh up to 10 pounds, are big trouble.

That's for large commercial airplanes. Smaller planes such as the puddle jumpers that fly out of most South Dakota airports would have much less margin for trouble.