The European Air Safety Agency has ordered all Airbus A380s to be inspected for cracks, despite claims by an Airbus spokesman that just a “handful” of brackets were damaged, according to Reuters. Two very different opinions of the fleet are being espoused by either side, as the EASA says that a first round of plane checks revealed cracks in almost every plane, which “may lead to a reduction of the structural integrity of the aeroplane.”
On the other hand, Airbus says that “The safe operation of this aircraft is not at stake.”
Airbus isn’t the only manufacturer dealing with construction glitches. Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, famous for being mostly with composite parts, reported manufacturing flaws just a few months into service.
Both manufacturers have put a lot into their respective new fleets, and as a result are trying their best to downplay this news in the face of underwhelming sales numbers. A Boeing spokesman said that plane deliveries would again be delayed by this setback, but the target for the year would go unchanged.
Now, the threshold for inspecting each plane has been lowered to 1,300 flights, and Airbus must foot the bill for inspection and repair costs.
Questions about the A380 first arose — and rightfully so — when an engine exploded and tore open a wing in 2010.
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