Jun 25, 2015
Airbus resumes A400M deliveries
The first production-standard aircraft to leave the Seville final assembly line, since the grounding was enacted by the Spanish authorities on 9 May, was delivered to the French Air Force on the same day that the suspension of flight was lifted on 19 June. This aircraft, MSN019, is the seventh to be delivered to France and the 13th to be delivered in all.
Airbus DS has not released a timeline for further deliveries, but the assembly line has also completed the build of four aircraft for the United Kingdom. These will now undergo pre-delivery checks and trials before being flown to Royal Air Force (RAF) Brize Norton in Oxfordshire.
With the Spanish Directorate General of Armament and Material grounding now lifted, the entire fleet of three company-owned testbeds, four production-standard platforms, and 13 operational aircraft is cleared to fly. Of those customers that have already received aircraft, France maintained the flying status of its aircraft throughout, while Germany, Malaysia, Turkey, and the UK temporarily suspended flights of their aircraft. The UK has now resumed flying.
The Spanish authorities that are leading the investigation into the fatal crash of MSN023 have yet to officially comment, but Airbus DS has issued two notices to operators based on its own analysis. These notices are related to the A400M's four EuroProp International TP400-D6 engines, three of which malfunctioned on the ill-fated flight that claimed the lives of four of the six crew members.