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The line continues! First flight test of an A400M since the crash

(credit: AIrbus)
The A400M in a test flight on May 12 (credit: Airbus)

(B2) “The line continues against all odds, with its exploits but also its dramas“. It was the motto of Aéropostale as Jean Mermoz recounted in his memoirs, after the accident which struck a plane of his company, a Late 28 left Buenos Aires, in which the port of call manager from Porto Allegre, Victor Hamm, had taken his place. This seems to be that of Airbus today (which has its headquarters in Toulouse like its illustrious predecessor Latécoère).

Don't dwell on a failure

Just a few days after the MSN23 crash, one of its devices destined for Turkey, the European company wanted to show that life goes on. A test flight took place on Tuesday (May 12). “ The MSN4 took off from Toulouse at 14:45 p.m. and landed in Seville 1 hour 50 minutes later » indicates the press release from the European aircraft manufacturer. “ A regular test flight planned before the accident ". With a distinguished guest on board. Fernando Alonso, the director of Airbus Defense & Space Military Aircraft, in person and acting “as a flight test engineer”.

A tribute to the crew

« The crew would have liked these flights to continue. This theft took place. This is our tribute said Fernando Alonso. The A400M flight test program « continues unless or until any evidence suggests it is unsafe to fly”. " So far, no evidence has emerged underlines Airbus. Note that Airbus has five test planes A400M : three are currently in service and two more have been removed. All of this five planes have accumulated more 2700 flights et more 7500 flight hours

The investigation begins

Spanish authorities have confirmed that the two black boxes have been found. Spanish military authorities also informed Airbus Defense and Space on May 12 that, as a precautionary measure and pending the investigation into the accident, they were suspending “ temporarily » the flight permit for aircraft awaiting delivery. If two A400M customers (Germany and the United Kingdom) have decided to ground their planes, Spain and France to a certain extent have confirmed that they will keep the aircraft in operation.


Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).