Remember the drone that a British Airways pilot said he hit in approach to London Heathrow airport earlier this week? Well, it turns out it may have been, “a plastic bag or something.”
The update comes from the UK’s Minister of State for Transport Robert Goodwill, who revealed that there may have been a goof up in communication and reporting while speaking to the House of Lords. “The reported drone strike on Sunday has not confirmed it was actually a drone,” he said. “It was the local police force that tweeted that they had a report of a drone striking an aircraft […] there’s indeed some speculation that it may have even been a plastic bag or something.”
You can forgive the mistake on the pilot’s part. He believed he hit a drone—something many have been expecting would happen sooner or later—and was moving about 160 knots (184mph) when the incident happened so he didn’t get a good look. But from the beginning, people were questioning the news given the lack of any evidence that there was significant (or, in fact, any) damage done to the plane and no drone parts were found despite calls from the authorities to turn in any debris.
This time, at least, the skeptics seem to have been proven right.
Image credits: British Airways Airbus A320 by Aero Icarus