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UK halts Airbus A400M usage

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 Malevolent    2,906

There have been too many incidents involving these Airbus planes.





MoD pauses aircraft operations involving new military transport plane while investigation is carried out into crash in Spain that killed four and injured two

 An Airbus A400M military transport plane crashed in Seville while performing a test flight, killing four crew members. Photograph: Spanish police handout/EPA

Press Association

Sunday 10 May 2015 10.32 BSTLast modified on Sunday 10 May 201518.56 BST

Britain has temporarily stopped using a new military transport plane after one crashed near Seville airport in south-west Spain, killing four crew members and seriously injuring the other two.

The Ministry of Defence has two Airbus A400M aircraft, and their operations have now been paused.

The plane was undergoing flight trials at Seville airport, which was closed after the crash.

An MoD spokeswoman said: “The UK’s A400M aircraft operations have been paused while an investigation into the crash in Seville is carried out. Our thoughts are with the family and friends of those involved in the incident.”

The Royal Air Force took delivery of its first Airbus A400M in an official ceremony at RAF Brize Norton last November. In all, 22 have been ordered, to be delivered over the next few years.

Airbus Defence and Space said that of a total crew of six, four were killed and two were in hospital in a serious condition. All the crew members were company employees and of Spanish nationality. A spokesman said: “Our thoughts are with the families and friends of those affected by this tragic accident and we are providing all our care and support.”

An Airbus Group team of technical advisers was being sent to provide full assistance to the official committee in charge of the investigation.

The plane was expected to be the third aircraft to be delivered to a Turkish customer, and formal delivery was scheduled for next month.

The A400M is a large, propeller-driven transport aircraft that is being assembled in Seville. Some 194 have been ordered by eight countries, including Spain, seeking a replacement to its ageing Hercules fleet.

The plane can perform three very different types of duties: tactical and strategic missions directly to the site of action, as well as being able to serve as a “tanker”. It is thought to be the ideal airlifter to fulfil the diverse requirements of nations around the globe in terms of military and humanitarian missions.

It was launched in 2003 to respond to the combined needs of seven European nations (Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain, Turkey and the UK), with Malaysia joining in 2005. Its maiden flight took place in December 2009 and the delivery of the first A400M was on 1 August 2013 to the French air force.

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