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By Citizen Reporter

Journalist


FlySafair plane struck by SAA aircraft in parking accident at OR Tambo airport

The SAA aircraft was being towed when it veered into the stationary FlySafair plane.


A South African Airways (SAA) Airbus A320 that was being towed at the OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg hit a stationary FlySafair plane, leading to both aircraft being unable to take to the sky.

There were no passengers on board the planes when the collision happened on Friday night.

Ground accident at OR Tambo airport

The SAA wing tip and the FlySafair tail section were damaged.

SAA said that its Airbus A320 was being towed from the airport ramp to the maintenance facility when the accident occurred.

It said the tow bar of a tow truck broke, which caused the plane to veer off and hit a parked FlySafair aircraft.

“This is truly an unfortunate development as this takes out the seating capacity of two aircraft, an SAA A320 and a FlySafair B737, out of the market at a time when our passengers are experiencing higher ticket prices due to limited aircraft availability on our domestic market,” said SAA Executive Chairperson and CEO John Lamola.

“My colleagues at FlySafair and I are committed to taking extraordinary steps at ensuring that both the aircraft are brought back to service as soon as possible.”

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The South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) have been notified.

According to News24, FlySafair said its Boeing 737-800 was parked at gate C2 when the incident happened.

“The aircraft was parked and not in commission when the aft (rear) section was struck by the wingtip of an SAA Airbus A320, which was being towed into the parking bay alongside,” the airline said.

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The airline said a backup aircraft had been deployed and its scheduled flights should not be affected.

FlySafair grounds plane

In April, FlySafair had to ground one of its planes after a technical glitch.

The airline had to divert two flights on 30 March and 5 April.

During both flights, the same plane had to be diverted to Chief Dawid Stuurman International Airport in Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape. The plane was flying from East London to Cape Town on both occasions.

FlySafair said during both flights, the captain was alerted to an indication error from a small component on the wing after departure and followed safety protocol by landing in Gqeberha

NOW READ: FlySafair grounds one of its planes after technical glitch

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flysafair South African Airways (SAA)