The A320 in question, at Wellington Airport in 2014. Copyright Micha Leuck.

An Air New Zealand Airbus A320-200 (ZK-OXC) suffered a bird strike as the aircraft took off from Wellington, New Zealand, leading to an abandoned take-off on the flight bound for Auckland.

The A320 was performing flight NZ402 with 148 passengers on board when a bird entered the engine at about 6:30am on November 3.

Passengers heard the aircraft braking loudly as the takeoff was aborted for concerns over any damage the incident may have caused. Most passengers remained calm during the event, and offered praise for the pilot’s fast response in immediately braking to abort the take-off, including Louise Aitken on Twitter:

Amazing response from [Air New ZEALAND] pilot on NZ402… Hit bird on runway @ speed. Brakes on, pilot calm and clear. Now checking engine.

An airline spokeswoman told the media that the aircraft returned to the apron where it had an engineering check before it departed within the hour.

Passengers also enjoyed their pilot’s response to the incident:

Pilot comes out and explains what happened. “They are pretty good brakes”. Classic!

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