Pilot Says Allowing Pond Near Wichita Airport a Bad Idea

By  | 

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) _ A Kansas pilot who was forced to make an emergency landing when his jetliner was hit by a flock of birds is at odds with plans for a pond near Wichita's Mid-Continent Airport.

FedEx polit Virgil Youngers of Clearwater tells KWCH-TV that the crew didn't know what had happened until the 2006 flight turned around and made it back to Omaha. Youngers said it was lucky that the engine didn't fly apart.

So Youngers opposes a plan to build a pond in south Sedgwick County, two-and-a-half miles from Mid-Continent, under the path of planes taking off and landing. Geese and other birds are drawn to water, he says.

Landowner Allen Thome says he wants to build the pond to water cattle, and when the housing market turns around perhaps build a residential development around the water.

Thome says his pond will just be one of many other small bodies of water near the airport.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)