But They'll Be Back... As Soon As Sunday
They're now heading home... but judging by the crowds of fervent
planewatchers and curious bystanders alike who clogged streets
around New York's JFK International and Los Angeles International
Airport this week to witness the arrival of 555-passenger,
double-deck Airbus A380 on US shores, it's safe to say the massive
airliner created quite a stir across the US this week.
As ANN reported, a Lufthansa
A380 landed at JFK Monday morning, followed a short time later by a
second A380's touchdown on the other side of the country, at
Despite the best efforts by Airbus to have both planes land
simultaneously -- thus easing protests that LAX got gypped out of its original
agreement with Airbus to host the first A380 landing
-- the west coast plane touched down about 15 minutes after the JFK
plane. Those holding patterns can be a pain.
Both aircraft were in the US for the first time for a series of
route-proving exercises. First delivery of the A380 is slated for
October 2007 to Singapore Airlines.
After a visit to Chicago to display the plane to interested
customers at O'Hare, the fully-outfitted Lufthansa A380 departed
JFK Wednesday evening. The plane will make a return visit to the US
Sunday night, however. The LAX A380 -- a stripped-down test model
lacking an interior -- departed the day before, bound for Toulouse,
On March 26, Washington Dulles International Airport will host a
group of invited guests in a tour and demonstration flight of the
Lufthansa A380 around the Washington area.
What Happened At LAX?
ANN received several emails from curious readers who watched
video of the A380 land at LAX -- an arrival accompanied by
prodigious white smoke from the 22 mainwheels, and a decided swerve
to starboard as the nosewheel touched down. As best we've been able
to ascertain, it appears the landing was not indicative of any
problem with the superjumbo -- but rather simply a less-than-ideal
landing by the Airbus test pilot at the controls, who perhaps had a
bit too much right rudder in on touchdown.
Alas, that landing will be forever immortalized on video (yes,
it's on YouTube). Think about that, the next time you beat yourself
up for that hard arrival in your Bonanza or Skyhawk...