A Sydney bound Airbus 380 flight QF32 originating in London was forced to return to Singapore Changi International Airport after experiencing troubles with engine number 2 just 15 minutes after having taken off from Changi International Airport. The brand new Airbus 380 delivered on and carrying 433 passengers and 26 crew started to experience what passengers described as a sort of explosion emanating from under the left wing. Early reports have indicated that the aircraft had lost an engine cover. In facts residents of the Indonesian island of Batam whom the aircraft had overflown were gathering several pieces of debris lost from the aircraft showing Qantas logo. In preparation to the emergency landing at Changi international, it took up to two hours for the crew to complete the dumping of fuel procedure. The aircraft landed safely at Changi, however damages were visible on the aft of the number 2 engine’s nacelle. Darkened parts of the underbelly nearby also indicated some type of a fire.
The incident was taken very seriously by Qantas management. The airline immediately ordered the grounding of the entire A380 fleet ( 6 aircraft) pending full incident report regarding QF32. Other A380 operators ; Air France and Lufthansa announced that they would conduct A380 flights as planned. The world largest has had somewhat of difficult entry into service after the program ran into delays. To date 37 aircraft have been delivered and flying with 5 airlines from a total order book of 234. Although minor incidents have sporadically surface in the press since 2007, the giant aircraft had steadily began to influence air travel particularly on the high density kangaroo routes where a fierce competition is raging with Singapore Airlines and its 11-strong A380 fleet.