A Boeing 727 carrying 80 passenger reportedly was hit by a drone as it approached landing in Mozambique. The Linhas Aereas de Mocambique (LAM) jet was headed to Tete and as it approached the runway, the pilots reported hearing a loud band on the front of the plane.
The crew suspected a bird strike and made a safe landing but a post flight examination revealed a drone had impacted the right side of the nose of the plane, causing significant damage, according to the airline.
The airline confirmed the occurrence, according to the Aviation Herald, and a replacement aircraft was dispatched to Tete to perform the return flight.
While in many countries there are strict rules around drone use near airports, there are frequent drone flights in the area around the Tete airport for mining surveys. The Aviation Herald reported that witnesses say the drones, weighing about 22 pounds, are operated without regard to aircraft traffic. No one has reported a missing drone yet.