Genève Aéroport's wildlife hazard prevention unit (PPP)
Every year, damage caused by collisions between aircraft and wildlife, especially birds, costs airlines and air-forces hundreds of millions of francs. Statistics from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) show an average of 8,458 impacts per year between 1999 and 2000.
Experience shows that, actually, the figure is at least four times higher - nearly 34,000 collisions per year, or 93 impacts per day.
Commercial aviation has not suffered any very serious accidents in recent years. However, there is a need to remain alert to this phenomenon and to put in place the means necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and their passengers.
All species of wildlife, even small ones, can cause significant damage to an aircraft. However, it is difficult to define clearly whether a species is a potential hazard to aviation in the broadest sense.
Wildlife hazard prevention at Genève Aéroport has been a security prerogative for many years. It has been strengthened in recent years with the creation of the Wildlife Hazard Prevention Unit (PPA), born of a long-standing partnership between Genève Aéroport and the Office of Works and Environmental Studies - BTEE SA. Prevention measures to counter wildlife hazards at airports in general, and at ours in particular, are an area that is both huge, complex, innovative and exciting.