A new Airbus A321neo only delivered to Transavia Airlines in December 2023 and performing its fifth full day of commercial operations has been damaged by a birdstrike on landing at Faro Airport in Portugal. The aircraft involved currently remains grounded at the Portuguese airport pending repairs.
The new aircraft carrying registration PH-YHZ was performing flight HV5355 from Amsterdam (AMS) to Faro (FAO) on January 9, 2024. While on approach to Faro’s runway 28, a large bird impacted the nose of the aircraft. However, despite the high-speed impact, the aircraft was able to continue to make a safe landing and there were no injuries among the passengers or crew.
Given the extent of the damage to the front of the aircraft, notably a dented radome, the aircraft was unable to depart for the return flight to Amsterdam later that same day. At the time of writing, the aircraft remains on the ground at Faro and is presumably awaiting engineers and a new radome before it can return to the Netherlands.
PH-YHZ was handed over to the Dutch carrier on December 18, 2023, and is leased from Air Lease Corporation. However, following entry-into-service modifications in Amsterdam, it only entered commercial service with the carrier on January 5, 2024.
According to data from Flightradar24, the trip to Faro was the aircraft’s first visit to Portugal and was operating only its eighth roundtrip sortie following its entry into service five days previously.
The aircraft was delivered to Transavia’s main operating base at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport (AMS) on December 19, 2023, from Airbus’ Hamburg production facilities using sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) on its delivery flight.
Transavia’s newly delivered A321neo seats 232 passengers in a single-class layout. The delivery of PH-YHZ to Transavia marked the first time that the carrier, part of the Air France-KLM Group, has operated Airbus narrowbody aircraft in its fleet portfolio.
The introduction of the new aircraft is the first step in Transavia Airlines’ transition to becoming an all-Airbus operator. Due to its lower fuel consumption and emissions, the A321neo is viewed as playing a key role in the airline group’s future sustainability development goals.
The airline’s strategic investment in the A320neo family, comprising 100 aircraft with purchase rights for an additional 60, reaffirms the group’s dedication to reducing its environmental footprint. Air France-KLM aims to replace all Transavia Airlines’ Boeing 737-700 and 737-800 aircraft with Airbus A320neo and A321neo models over the next seven years.
On January 10, 2024, the second Airbus A320neo family aircraft, an A320neo registered F-GNEO, was delivered to the carrier’s French subsidiary, Transavia France at Orly Airport (ORY) in Paris.