Qantas A380 suffers flight engine failure

4 Nov 2010

Airbus confirms that an Airbus A380 aircraft, operated by Qantas, experienced flight engine failure during flight QF32 from Singapore to Sydney today, November 4, 2010.

At the opening dinner tonight of the 54th Assembly of Presidents of the Association of Asian Airlines (AAP), Christopher Buckley, Airbus executive vice-president, Europe, Asia and Pacific, said that an investigation was being conducted into the cause of the mishap and full technical assistance extended to the affected carrier. The aircraft manufacturer has dispatched a team of specialists to Singapore.

The aircraft, registration number VH-OQA, Manufacturer Serial Number 14, was delivered to Qantas on September 19, 2008 and had logged around 8165 flight hours and 831 flight cycles as of today. It is powered by four Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines.

Preliminary reports indicate that the aircraft suffered an engine failure after take-off from Singapore. It turned back and landed safely in Changi Airport at 1145. There were 440 passengers and 26 crew on board. No injuries were reported.

Qantas' response to the incident was to suspend all services of its six A380s. The carrier's CEO Alan Joyce told Australian media that the suspension would remain until they were confident that all the safety issues had been met.

The 90-year-old airline has long boasted a safety record that was the envy of the industry, except for a fatal crash in 1951 off Papua New Guinea. But recently, there have been some scares, the most serious of which resulted in the forced landing of a Boeing B747-400 at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport due to a faulty oxygen tank that exploded in mid air, blowing a large hole in the fuselage.

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Margie T Logarta

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