The flight, that was from Palm Beach, California, to LaGuardia Airport in New York, was diverted to John F Kennedy International Airport (JFK) after the pilots reported a mechanical problem, according to the New York Post.
The Airbus A319, that was carrying 43 passengers, landed safely at JFK at around 7pm, but had noticeable damage to its nose, in what was first reported as a bird strike.
ABC reporter Aaron Katersky tweeted: “Delta flight 1076 from West Palm Beach to LGA diverted to JFK after a bird strike damaged the nose cone. 43 passengers were aboard. The flight landed safely and without incident.”
However, it was later reported that Delta was investigating the possibility that hail might have been the reason for the dent in the nose of the plane.
.@Delta flight 1076 from West Palm Beach to LGA diverted to JFK after a bird strike damaged the nose cone. 43 passengers were aboard. The flight landed safely and without incident. pic.twitter.com/WlNXn6atOY
— Aaron Katersky (@AaronKatersky)
In a statement, the airline said that “Delta flight 1076 operating from West Palm Beach to New York-LaGuardia diverted to New York-JFK out of an abundance of caution following a mechanical issue.
“The flight landed safely and without incident and maintenance is evaluating the aircraft.”
The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the incident, according to ABC News.
The incident is another blow to Delta, as the airline industry has been badly affected by the coronavirus pandemic in the past few months, which has restricted flights and caused companies to record their first losses for years, according to CNBC.
However, on Tuesday, it was announced that Delta, along with other major airlines, including United Airlines and Jet Blue, had agreed a deal with the Treasury Department for loans to help them get through the crisis.
Earlier in the year, Delta said that they were eligible for a loan of $4.6bn (£3.6bn), as part of the coronavirus stimulus package, the CARES Act, which was agreed to help businesses and workers during the pandemic.
The exact figures have not yet been released, but in a statement, the Treasury Department said: “The major U.S. airlines play a vital role in our economy and are critical to domestic and international travel and commerce.
“These airlines are among the companies most heavily affected by the disruptions to social and economic activity caused by the pandemic.”
The Independent has contacted Delta for comment.