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Lightning Strikes Not Usually A Problem For Airplanes, But Latest Strike Forces Air France To Declare Mid-Air Emergency

Travelers Today       By    Yosarrian Nino

Updated: May 22, 2017 10:48 AM EDT

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Air France, lightning strike, mid-air emergency

One of the most common causes of concern for air travel is turbulence, while lightning strikes are one of its least concerns. However, an Air France flight from Paris to Birmingham was forced to declare a mid-air emergency after it was struck by lightning last May 19.

According to a report from The Sun, the plane had just left the Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport when it was struck by lightning. The strike has caused the alarm to sound and for the plane to declare an emergency.

Despite all of this, the plane is said to still have landed at Birmingham safely. A spokesperson confirmed that flight AF1064 was struck by lightning and said that the declaration of emergency was just a precautionary measure.

"The aircraft has since landed safely at Birmingham Airport with no emergency response needed and with no injuries to passengers or crew," the spokesperson said. Travel + Leisure reports that airplanes are struck by lightning often and only a few people usually notice these things.

Airplanes are usually built to withstand these lightning strikes. But there are moments that these strikes can cause some concern, as evident on what happened to the Air France flight.

But the show that a plane being struck by lightning puts is usually much worse than the actual effects or damage to the plane. AOL reports that the worse thing that can usually happen when a lightning strikes a plane is just a loud boom and a bright flash.

Experts are estimating that each commercial fleet is struck by lightning at least once annually, which is why these planes are built to withstand them. Check out the video below to learn more about what happens when a lightning strikes an airplane and the technology that manufacturers use to ensure planes are not affected by it.

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