Airbus pulls superjumbo from flight display


Plane-maker Airbus yesterday said it was pulling one of its flagship double-decker A380s out of a flying display at the Paris Air Show, compounding a series of embarrassing hiccups for the EADS unit at this year’s big-ticket industry event.

The right-hand wing-tip of the A380, the world’s largest jetliner with a wingspan of almost 80 meters (yards), “touched” a structure at the Le Bourget airport during ground manoeuvres and will not perform in the flying display, Airbus said.
“Airbus experts are currently inspecting the aircraft, but it is already confirmed that the A380 … will not perform the flying display,” it said in a statement yesterday evening.

Earlier, Airbus said another of its models, the delayed and over-budget A400M military transport plane, would not be able to carry out a daring display routine on Monday after suffering a gearbox problem.

Airbus Military’s chief executive had said there was no problem with safety but that flight-test requirements were “very demanding.”

Sunday’s incident also comes just two months after U.S. investigators impounded an Air France A380 that collided with a smaller jet at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport. There were no reports of injuries.