Smithsonian Confirms Birds Hit Both Hudson Jet Engines
Engines from the US Airways Airbus 340 that made an emergency landing in New York's Hudson River in January were sent to the Smithsonian Institute in Washington for testing to determine the cause of the malfunction, and results confirm that birds collided with the engines simultaneously.
Flight 1549 resulted in the safe retrieval of all passengers and crew thanks to the heroic and skilled water ditching performed by Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger. The plane's black box had already revealed that a bird strike was the cause of the engine failure, but it was unclear whether both engines were struck simultaneously.
Both the US Airways Airbus A320's engines had passed inspections before the crash, officials said.
Flight data also showed there were no problems with the engines until pilot Capt Chesley B "Sully" Sullenberger reported hitting birds.
The right engine remained attached to the airliner when it hit the water on 15 January.
The left engine separated and had to be retrieved from the mud on the bottom of the river near where the jet ditched.
Flight data show both engines cut out simultaneously and the sound of thumps could be heard after Capt Sullenberger's reported approaching birds.
An online game based on the crash, "Double Bird Strike," was based on assumptions that birds hit the engines at the same time, and it now appears those assumptions were correct. The exact type of bird that collided with the Airbus engines has yet to be determined.