Boeing 737 runs over and kills a brown bear while landing in Alaska after animal strayed onto runway
- The Boeing 737-700 killed animal on Saturday evening at Yakutat Airport, Alaska
- Plane landed after dark, airport crew cleared runway before flight due to land
- First time a bear is reported to have been hit, two year old cub was uninjured
A Boeing 737 ran over and killed a brown bear while landing in Alaska after the animal strayed onto the runway.
An Alaska Airlines jetliner struck the animal while landing early on Saturday evening at Yakutat Airport in southeast Alaska.
The Boeing 737-700 killed the female brown bear, but a cub thought to be about 2 years old was uninjured.
An Alaska Airlines jetliner killed the animal while landing early on Saturday evening damaging the aircraft (pictured)
None of the passengers or crew members on board the plane were injured during the accident, but the plane was damaged, officials said.
Airport crew members had cleared the runway about 10 minutes before the flight was expected to land, Alaska Department of Transportation spokesman Sam Dapcevich said.
Planes previously have been reported to hit deer, geese, caribou and other animals in Alaska, but this is the first time Mr Dapcevich was aware of a bear being struck.
The plane landed after dark and crews followed normal procedures for runway checks.
‘The nose gear missed the bears, but the captain felt an impact on the left side after the bears passed under the plane,’ Alaska Airlines said in a statement.
Airport crew members had cleared the runway at Yakutat Airport in southeast Alaska about 10 minutes before the flight was expected to land (pictured)
The pilots saw the bear lying about 20 feet from the center of the runway as the plane taxied to a parking area just before 6.30pm, the airline said.
The jet’s left engine was damaged, and the plane remained in Yakutat on Sunday.
The plane departed from the town of Cordova and was scheduled to stop in Juneau after leaving Yakutat.
Employees undergo annual wildlife hazard training and use pyrotechnics or vehicles to herd animals away.