HYANNIS (CBS) – A Cape Air plane’s windshield was shattered after a large bird crashed through it on Wednesday morning, leaving passengers startled and covered in blood.
The Nantucket-bound flight was forced to return to Barnstable Municipal Airport after the bizarre incident, but fortunately both the pilot and co-pilot, along with all four passengers were not hurt.
Typically the flight lasts about 15 minutes, which is why passengers told WBZ-TV it’s normally easy to get on board and not worry about anything going wrong.
“I think it’s a freak accident. We take this flight a lot. Nothing like that has ever happened before,” said passenger Mike Swelts.
Officials said around 9 a.m., as the flight began its path over the ocean, the Cessna 402C struck a loon, causing the co-pilot’s windshield to shatter and the glass to cover both pilots, while the four passengers were splattered with the bird’s blood.
“It’s one of those freaks of nature. It’s probably not any different from driving down the highway and having a deer cross in front of you and hit your car,” said Bobbie Howrey, who was a passenger on board the flight.
The pilots were able to turn the flight around and fly safely back to the airport in Hyannis.
Officials said the plane was taken to a hangar at the airport and has already been repaired. There’s no word on when it will be back in service.
All four passengers were allowed to change their blood-soaked clothes when they returned to the airport and boarded another flight to Nantucket, with an incredible story to share over their Thanksgiving dinners.
“I still think the statistics on flying are safer than driving to the grocery store,” said passenger Steve Swelts.