Hein Kaiser
Journalist
3 minute read
21 Apr 2022
10:24 am

British Airways tail scrape: How it happens, and why it could have been deadly

Hein Kaiser

This week's tail scrape of a BA plane from OR Tambo was minor, and the flight continued, but similar incidents have been more deadly.

A British Airways Boeing 747 taking off from London Heathrow Airport in the UK. Picture: iStock

British Airways South Africa and Kulula operator Comair suffered its fifth safety-related incident in four months on Tuesday. It was the second incident after its grounding was lifted last month. The operator confirmed that a BA branded flight from Johannesburg to Mauritius was forced to return to OR Tambo International Airport following a tail strike. It landed safely after 85 minutes in the air, remained on the ground for around two and a half hours and was renumbered as a Kulula flight MN 399A on re-departure. A tail strike or tail scrape, an aircraft engineer said to The Citizen, can...