Two Planes Struck by Lightning En Route to London

"There was a very loud noise and a really bright light," one passenger said.

April 28, 2016, 9:52 AM

LONDON — -- Lightning struck at least two planes Wednesday night as they approached London's Heathrow Airport.

British Airways flight BA857, departing from Prague, and Icelandair flight 454 from Reykjavik were both hit by lightning on their way to London.

"There was a very loud noise and a really bright light," Catherine Mayer, a passenger on the Icelandair flight, told ABC News.

Mayer, founder of the British Women’s Equality Party, was on her way to London to vote for her own party for the first time, on May 5. When the plane dropped through the clouds, the aircraft flew into a storm and the lightning struck.

"I thought: ‘I can’t die. I have to vote,’" Mayer said.

After the plane landed safely at about 8 p.m., the pilot said, "You may have noticed a lightning strike," according to Mayer, adding that everyone started laughing.

"It happened so close to the point of landing that we didn’t have much time to worry about it," she said. "When we landed, everyone went, ‘Oh, my God, we just survived a lightning strike.’"

An Icelandair spokesman confirmed the incident, saying the aircraft was inspected after landing for safety reasons. "The lightning strike did not cause damage to the aircraft and the aircraft was returned to service after that inspection," he told ABC News.

Other passengers on the planes wrote about the incidents on social media:

As for the plane from Prague, "The flight landed safely, and underwent an inspection before it returned to service," a British Airways spokesman told ABC News of the flight that landed less than 90 minutes after the other.

"Lightning strikes are fairly common, and aircrafts are designed to cope with them."

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