WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork) — A JetBlue flight headed to John F. Kennedy International Airport had to return to Washington, D.C. Wednesday night after striking a bird.
JetBlue Flight 1808 was departing Washington Dulles International Airport at 9:11 p.m. when a bird struck the engine about 15 minutes into the flight, JetBlue told CBS News.
Passengers reported hearing a sound coming from the engine.
“Amazing impact and the noise,” said passenger Luis Ortiz from Queens. “Immediately everyone felt the jolt and everyone knew there was something wrong.”
The captain told passengers they would have to return to Dulles, the flight crew telling those on board to brace for impact upon landing.
“When he mentioned there was an issue with the landing gear, we got a little hysterical,” said Ortiz.
The plane was in the air for 40 minutes and landed safely. Passengers reported seeing fuel from the plane, spilling onto the the tarmac.
“Landing was very turbulent, extremely rough. Bouncing around. As soon as we landed, the fire department was there and immediately started foaming the engines and all the fuel spillage that was on the tarmac,” said Ortiz. “It was really an emotional experience. Thank God the pilot got us there safely.”
Photos and video from the scene showed firefighters responding and foam on the ground.
The aircraft was a E190 which is the smaller of the two planes JetBlue flies, CBS News’ Kris Van Cleave reported. The plane was being inspected for damage early Thursday morning.
The passengers were put on another plane, which landed at JFK around 2:30 a.m.
The Federal Aviation Administration says it will investigate.