India warns airlines of locust swarm flight risk

The News International has reported India has warned airlines that locust swarms plaguing large stretches of the country could disrupt passenger flights, the company said.

The worst insect invasion in nearly three decades has already caused massive damage to seasonal crops, crippling Indian farmers struggling with the impact of a months-long national coronavirus lockdown.

The swarms have become so large that the civil aviation ministry said they pose a threat to aircraft in the critical landing and take off phase of the flight. The impact of large numbers on the windshield is known to have impacted the pilot forward vision. The ministry urged airlines to avoid any swarms, which had the potential to enter air inlets and damage flight instruments.

Experts warn the locust plague could get worse with more insects expected to reach India from the Horn of Africa next month.