Airlines win in bird strike case

EU judge says bird strikes are “extraordinary circumstance”
Airlines have won a victory against aggrieved passengers in a ruling by the European Court of Justice, whose judges agreed that flights delayed or cancelled because of a bird strike are an “extraordinary circumstance” beyond the airline’s control.
This means airlines do not have to pay compensation to passengers who have been delayed for this reason.
The case was brought by Czech passengers Marcela Peskova and Jirí Peska, who claimed €400 each from Travel Service AS, which runs the low-cost carrier Smartwings.
Their flight from Bourgas in Bulgaria to Ostrava in the Czech Republic was delayed by over five hours due to a bird strike on the aircraft.
Bird strikes are extremely common throughout Europe, with some airports deploying birds of prey to prevent other birds from straying into their airspace.


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