THE EUROPEAN Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has ordered a safety check on 20 Airbus A380 planes to check for any cracks in the wings.
The directive comes after Airbus reported two different cases of cracked A380 wings to the EASA. One of those aircraft was the Qantas plane which suffered engine failure in November 2010.
The EASA directive applies to all A380 planes which have completed more than 1,300 flights. Those that have completed over 1,800 flights will have to be checked in the next four days, while the other planes covered by the directive must be checked within the coming six weeks.
FlightGlobal reports that the planes affected by the EASA order belong to Singapore Airlines, Emirates Airlines and Air France. Neither Ryanair nor Aer Lingus has any A380s in their fleet.
The EASA said it was working closely with Airbus “to ensure the continuing safety of the A380 aircraft type” and says the aircraft manufacturer has established a repair scheme to deal with any cracks.
In its statement, the EASA said it “continues to review the situation closely”, and added: ”As a result of the ongoing investigation, further mandatory actions may be considered.”
Airbus has sold over 250 Airbus A380s, of which around 60 are currently in operation, and the double-deck aircraft is listed as costing $389.9 million dollars per plane. The A380 is the world’s largest passenger plane.