Thursday, November 4, 2010

Travel News and Alerts: Qantas Flight's Engine Failure Causes Fleet to be Grounded

The damaged Trent 900 engine of Qantas Flight 32 (photo courtesy of http://www.cbc.ca/ and Vivek Prakash/Reuters) 

If you have an upcoming flight booked with Qantas, Australia's national airline, in the next few days, it is recommended that you call the airline to confirm your flight. The airline has suspended flights on its six Airbus A380 jetliners until the cause of an in-flight engine failure can be determined. According to the New York Times, Qantas Flight 32 bound for Sydney and carrying 433 passengers and 26 crew, experienced catastrophic failure of one of its Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engines, about 6 minutes after takeoff today. Passengers heard two loud bangs and saw flames and debris flying from the engine. The pilots shut down the engine immediately, dumped fuel and landed the super-jumbo jet safely at Singapore’s Changi International Airport. There are no reports of injury in the air or on the ground, but pieces of the engine were found by residents on the island of Batam, Indonesia.


Debris from the engine found in Indonesia (photo courtesy of http://www.3news.co.nz/)

The New York Times reports, "The incident was the first such engine failure experienced by the A380, which entered service in 2007, said Justin Dubon, an Airbus spokesman. Currently, 37 of the super-jumbos — which can seat up to 800 passengers — are being flown by four airlines: Air France, Emirates, Lufthansa, Singapore and Qantas."

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