Lightning strikes five planes near San Francisco

Five airline pilots reported that their planes were struck by lightning as rain fell in the Bay Area, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration said Monday night.

The strikes were reported around San Francisco International Airport during a roughly half-hour period that began at 12:15 pm Monday, said Ian Gregor, FAA spokesman in Los Angeles.

None of the pilots reported damage or requested special assistance, he said. The planes were from Alaska, Horizon, United and United Arab Emirates airlines, the agency said.

Gregor said that FAA certification regulations require planes to withstand "any likely lightning strike" and continue to fly safely and land.

Airlines are also required to have procedures in the maintenance programs for inspections after aircraft are struck by lightning.

Los Angeles Times

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