Qatar Airways to defer A380s

Qatar Airways to defer A380s

Qatar Airways to planning to defer delivery of its superjumbo A380 aircraft until more details become available surrounding the cracks in the wings.
Chief executive Akbar Al Baker revealed the news during Arabian Travel Market.

The carrier, which was named Middle East’s Leading Airline Business Class Middle East’s Leading Airline Lounge for 2012 by the World Travel Awards last night, which ordered 10 of the A380 aircraft in total, with five still pending.

“Qatar Airways will have to defer scheduled deliveries of its A380s from October 2013 until we have a clear position on the issue surrounding wing cracks which are under process of modification by Airbus,” Al Baker said.

Back in February European air safety regulators ordered checks after cracks were found in the wings of several A380s causing concern.

Meanwhile last week, Airbus revealed it is cutting back on the production of its A380 while it looks into fixing the cracks.

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The production rate for the A380 will be reduced from 2.7 aircraft each month to 2.3 for the next two quarters while Airbus looks into the problem, according to reports.

Airbus claims the move will not prevent it from hitting a target of delivering 30 A380s to customers this year, but that it may reduce the number of superjumbos provided to airlines next year.

Emirates Airlines made the largest order of A380 and had to temporarily ground its fleet due to the problem.