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lufthansaLufthansa  Airlines plane was forced to return to Beirut’s Rafik Hariri International Airport on Tuesday   because  its left engine collided with  a flock of birds. , reported the National News Agency. Lufthansa  Airlines  flight 1307, which had departed the airport at 4:48 a.m., was forced to return three minutes after takeoff.

The engine incurred heavy  damage and broke down,  NNA added

The plane returned safely to the airport at 5:04 a.m. along with its 148 passengers.

It is currently undergoing maintenance operations at the airport.

Director General of Lebanese Civil Aviation, Daniel al-Haiby, later told NNA that such accidents are frequent this time of year because migrant birds are returning to Lebanon.

Bird strikes are a significant threat to flight safety, and have caused a number of accidents with human casualties. The number of major accidents involving civil aircraft is quite low and it has been estimated that there is only about 1 accident resulting in human death in one billion flying hours. The majority of bird strikes (65%) cause little damage to the aircraft; however the collision is usually fatal to the bird(s) involved.

Most accidents occur when the birds hit the windscreen or fly into the engines

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