12 Jun 2009

Air Force plane hit by lightning

12:27 pm on 12 June 2009

A Royal New Zealand Air Force Orion with 16 people on board has been struck by lightning while flying over Canada.

The strike occurred on Tuesday while the aircraft was providing surveillance for Canadian forces.

The Air Force says the strike caused dramatic visual damage to the nose of the plane but the plane's structure and the safety of passengers was not compromised.

It says a replacement section is being sent to Canada to enable the aircraft to return to New Zealand.