Equivalent To 'Heavy Checks' Done On Airplanes After Years Of Flight
Airbus says that if the repairs to wing cracks which have cropped up on some A380 airplanes are all done "in one go," completion could take "weeks." At least one source says that the repairs could take up to two months to finish.
The French news service AFP reports that Airbus said the repairs would be similar to the "heavy checks" done on aircraft which have been in service for two, four, and six years. One source, FlightGlobal, indicated that the estimated down time on the airplanes needing repairs would be two months, but Airbus would not confirm that figure.
An Airbus company spokesman said that it would be up to each A380 owner to determine whether to take the airplanes out of service for an extended period to repair the cracks, or have the work done in stages. Airbus says the hairline cracks in the wing rib feet of some airplanes do not pose a structural or safety hazard.
Airbus is changing the aluminum it uses to manufacture the wing rib feet in airplanes that will be delivered in 2014. The company says it will cover the cost of the repairs, but not the losses an airline may incur because its superjumbos are out of service.