Qantas Grounds an A380 Because of Cracks in Its Wings

Illustration for article titled Qantas Grounds an A380 Because of Cracks in Its Wings

Last month, engineers found small cracks in the wings of Singapore Airlines' A380s. Now, Qantas has been forced to ground one its A380s because of the same problem.


The aircraft has been grounded since 5 February, and isn't set to fly again for at least another week, reports Bloomberg. The plane has flown between 20 and 30 times since the cracks were first discovered in January, but was grounded when more were found.


Airbus apparently said last month that the plane was safe to fly, as they did when the same problem occured with Singapore Airlines' planes, but they've finally changed their mind. It sounds like those wings could do with some attention. [Bloomberg; Image: MiqsPix]

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The aircraft was not grounded in the general use of the word. In aviation grounded means that the aircraft is on the ground for an unscheduled reason. In this case, the crack (which Airbus have acknowledged and understand the reasons why) was found and is being fixed. The aircraft was not scheduled to be on the ground, and as such is 'grounded' as it can't be flown. Because there are a bunch of mechanics fixing it, and they're not very good at doing that at 35,000 feet.

If this was a 737, nobody would notice or care. It's only because it's an A380, and as such is new and in the media spotlight, that anyone has even heard about it outside the people at Qantas.