Qantas, an Australian Airline has grounded its six-strong fleet of Airbus A380 airliners after one of the planes made an emergency landing in Singapore, Thursday.
The pilots of the afflicted Qantas aircraft flew it for well more than an hour after the event to burn off fuel for their return to Singapore. The event itself was initiated with a loud bang followed by “a little bit of fire, one passenger stated. Many others on board the aircraft felt it physically shudder. Passenger accounts state that the pilots kept passengers informed with regular updates after the event and there was calm in the cabin.
French experts blamed “a fault on the rear part of the jet motor” for “serious damage” that blew a hole in the wing of a Qantas A380 out of Singapore for Sydney and caused it to return (safely) to its point of departure.
Speaking for France’s air investigative agency, BEA, Jean-Paul Troadec called the event “a serious incident,” that led to “serious damage.”
“It’s a significant engine failure,” Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said at a news conference.
“We do take our safety reputation and our safety standards unbelievably seriously. And we’re not going to take any risks with passenger safety – and as a precaution, we’re suspending the flights of the A380 aircraft until we’re comfortable that we understand the reasons for this.”
No-one was injured during the incident, which ended at Singapore’s Changi airport.
“Singapore Airlines will be delaying all flights operating our A380 aircraft,” spokesman Nicholas Ionides said.
Passengers aboard the superjumbo were interviewed. Watch video here:
- AV web