Page last updated at 09:59 GMT, Thursday, 7 July 2005 10:59 UK

Plane hits cows on Nigeria runway

Cattle in Nigeria
An investigation has been launched into the security breach

An investigation has been launched after a plane ran into a herd of cows at Nigeria's Port Harcourt airport, officials say.

The Air France plane, with 196 people on board, ploughed into the cows as it touched down at Port Harcourt in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

No-one on board was hurt, but the collision left seven cows dead and the runway was soaked with their blood.

Port Harcourt is the centre of Nigeria's huge oil industry.

The return flight to Paris was cancelled and the airport was closed for several hours.

A spokeswoman for Air France said the Airbus A330 was checked by technicians, but was not damaged during the incident.

Passengers waiting to fly to Port Harcourt from the commercial capital, Lagos, on Wednesday said they were told that airport crew were chasing five cows around the airport.

Aviation Minister Mallam Isa Yuguda has summoned airport officials to explain the security breach, local newspapers report.

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