Serious incident Airbus A380-861 A6-EUB, Thursday 30 March 2017
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Date:Thursday 30 March 2017
Time:01:40 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic A388 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Airbus A380-861
Registration: A6-EUB
MSN: 213
Year of manufacture:2016
Engine model:Engine Alliance GP 7270
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 508
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Minor
Category:Serious incident
Location:Singapore-Changi International Airport (SIN/WSSS) -   Singapore
Phase: Pushback / towing
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Singapore-Changi International Airport (SIN/WSSS)
Destination airport:
Investigating agency: TSIB Singapore
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The left wing of a Boeing 787-9, registered 9V-OJA, and right winglet of an Emirates Airbus A380, A6-EUB, came into contact at Singapore-Changi International Airport.
At about 01:33 hours, the 787 aircraft had completed pushback from parking bay E28 in Terminal 2. The ATC trainee instructed the flight crew of the B787 to "taxi on greens" and hold short of Taxiway WA. The taxi route comprised Taxilane A6 and Taxiway NC3. The trainee did not verbalise the taxi route.
At that time, the green taxiway centreline lights along A6, NC3 and WA towards the threshold of runway 02L were illuminated. The illuminated lights had been in that configuration as a few aircraft had taxied on WA in the past 30 minutes.
According to the trainee, her plan was to have the B787 taxi on Taxiway WP after an arriving aircraft had landed and vacated Runway 02L via Rapid Exit Taxiway W5. She would then switch off the green taxiway centreline lights leading to WA and switch on the green taxiway centerline lights leading to WP (which was parallel to WA) to guide the B787 onto WP, and to hold short of it at Taxilane V6 towards the runway holding position of Runway 02L.
The trainee determined that she would be able to reconfigure the green taxiway centreline lights before the B787 arrived at the intersection of WA and NC3. Hence, she did not see the need to switch on the red stop bar light on NC3 short of WA.
The flight crew of the B787 read back to the trainee her instruction to "taxi on green" and hold short of WA, and proceeded to taxi. At about 01:34 hours, the trainee gave clearance to an A380 aircraft (A6-EUB) to commence pushback from parking bay C23 in Terminal 1. The pushback operation commenced at about 01:37 hours. The pushback involved pushing the aircraft tail-first and to the right onto Taxilane U1, with the aircraft ending up facing south.
At 01:38 hours, the flight crew of the B787 informed Air Traffic Control (ATC) that they were approaching the intersection of WA and NC3. The trainee instructed the B787 to "…continue on the greens and hold short V6".
After this, the trainee and trainer turned their attention away from the B787 to manage four departing aircraft near the holding position of Runway 02L.
In the meantime, the B787 continued to taxi along NC3. As the aircraft approached the intersection of WA and NC3, the flight crew observed that there was a continuous path of green lights leading from NC3 to WA on the left. The flight crew also observed that, on the remaining section of NC3 beyond the intersection, there were no green taxiway centreline lights and there were illuminated red stop bar lights. Thus, the flight crew adhered to the instruction of "taxi on greens" and turned left onto WA.
After turning onto WA, both the Pilot-in-command (PIC) and First Officer (FO) of the B787 saw the A380 on U1. The FO, who was taxiing the B787, slowed the aircraft significantly as the nose of the B787 came up abeam the A380’s vertical stabiliser. Both the PIC and FO visually judged that there was enough clearance between the two aircraft for them to continue taxiing
along WA.
Meanwhile, the A380 had been pushed out of C23 onto U1. The tow tug driver saw the B787 approaching. He stopped the tow tug as he was unsure if there was sufficient clearance.
While passing the A380 at about 01:40 hours, the left wing of the B787 came into contact with the right winglet of the A380. The tow tug driver heard a scrapping sound. However, the flight crew of the B787 felt only a slight jerk and they thought the aircraft had taxied over some uneven ground on the taxiway and they continued the taxiing.
After managing the four departing aircraft near Runway 02L, the trainee and trainer turned their attention back to the B787 at about 01:41 hours.
They then realised that the B787 was taxiing on WA instead of WP. At that time, the B787 was approaching Taxilane VZ. The trainee was not aware of anything untoward, and instructed the B787 to taxi to WP via V6 for departure on Runway 02L.
At about 01:42 hours, the flight crew of the A380 requested to return to the parking bay C23 after they had learnt from the towing crew that the A380’s right wing was damaged. ATC approved the request.
The flight crew of the B787 overheard the transmission from the A380 and stopped taxiing on WA. The PIC instructed the cabin crew to visually inspect the left wing for any anomaly. After being informed that the navigational light on the left wing appeared to be detached and hanging freely, the flight crew requested to return to a parking bay.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: TSIB Singapore
Report number: 
Status: Investigation completed
Download report: Final report



Graphic: TSIB Singapore

Revision history:

28-Sep-2020 07:54 harro Updated [Source, Accident report, ]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description

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