An air carrier is to be released from its obligation to pay passengers
compensation under Article 5(1)(c) and Article 7 of Regulation No 261/2004 if
the carrier can prove that the cancellation or delay of three hours or more is
caused by extraordinary circumstances which could not have been avoided even
if all reasonable measures had been taken.
A collision between an aircraft and a bird, as well as any damage caused by that
collision, since they are not intrinsically linked to the operating system of the
aircraft, are not by their nature or origin inherent in the normal exercise of the
activity of the air carrier concerned and are outside its actual control.
Accordingly, that collision must be classified as ‘extraordinary circumstances’
within the meaning of Article 5(3) of Regulation No 261/2004.