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Pilot Pulls Brakes on Flight Before Takeoff to Save Baby Hedgehog on Runway in UK

The Loganair flight was taxiing at Stornoway Airport in Isle of Lewis, UK, when the hoglet made a surprise appearance.

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Updated:September 30, 2019, 2:29 PM IST
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Pilot Pulls Brakes on Flight Before Takeoff to Save Baby Hedgehog on Runway in UK
Image for representation | Credit: Reuters

A flight with 30 passengers on board was delayed when the pilot applied brakes as soon as he saw a baby hedgehog on the runway seconds before it was about to take-off.

The Loganair flight was taxiing at Stornoway Airport in Isle of Lewis, UK, when the hoglet made a surprise appearance. The captain brought the Saab 340 aircraft to a halt around 5:20 pm and waited for at least two minutes before the hoglet crossed.

The pilot informed the passengers the reason for the delay in their journey to Inverness in the Highlands.

A report by Metro UK quoted Loganair's director of flight operations, Neil Hughes, saying: "The captain safely avoided a prickly situation for the little hedgehog, following procedure until the animal was off the tarmac. Our network extends into some of Scotland’s most remote communities so there are quite a few opportunities to see animals in the wild – and we’re always conscious to disturb them as little as possible."

Given the rural location of the airport in the Outer Hebrides, pilots operating planes from Stornoway constantly scan the runway for wildlife.

One of the passengers, Roddy McLeod took to Twitter and wrote, "I was on the LM156 from Stornoway to Inverness at 5pm when the aircraft was taxiing towards the runway when all of a sudden the brakes went on like an emergency stop! ‘After a minute the captain came over the radio telling us that he was waiting on a baby hedgehog to pass."

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