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Drone hits plane landing at London's Heathrow airport

By Shawn Price
Drone hits plane landing at London's Heathrow airport
A British Airways flight was likely hit by a drone as it approached London's Heathrow Airport on Sunday. The plane landed safely and it was undamaged in what is thought to be the first incident of its kind in Britain. Photo by Sorbis/Shutterstock

LONDON, April 17 (UPI) -- A plane likely hit a drone as it came in for a landing at London's Heathrow Airport on Sunday, Metropolitan Police said.

The British Airways flight was arriving from Geneva, Switzerland just before 1p.m. and landed safely with 132 passengers and five crew on board. The pilot then reported an object, believed to be a drone, had hit the front of the Airbus A320.

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Police at Heathrow are investigating what is believed to be the first of its kind incident in Britain and haven't made an arrest, but the plane was undamaged.

"Our aircraft landed safely, was fully examined by our engineers and it was cleared to operate its next flight," a British Airways spokesman said.

Seeking greater rule enforcement on the issue, Steve Landells of the British Airline Pilots Association, said it was "only a matter of time before we had a drone strike."

A recent study found more than 300 near misses between aircraft and drones in the United State since 2013.

"Our findings indicate that incidents largely occur in areas where manned air traffic density is high and where drone use is prohibited," experts said in a statement.

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