Airbus rejigs A380 logistics after wing ship beached

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Airbus is sending a second A380 transport ship to the UK to pick up additional wing sets, after the regular vessel became stranded at the port of Mostyn.

The Ville de Bordeaux is being dispatched to Mostyn after the Ciudad de Cadiz was beached on 30 January.

Airbus says a "slippage of her lines" resulted in the ship's grounding on a sandbank. Efforts to refloat the vessel have been unsuccessful and the next attempt is likely to be made during a high tide around 9 February.

"The high tides have been lower than predicted," says the airframer, with the result that the refloating bid has been postponed.

But Airbus stresses that the ship is undamaged, and that it is "secure and safe" with no risk of pollution. It is not carrying any cargo, the company adds.

Airbus is sending a sister vessel, the Ville de Bordeaux, to Mostyn - due to arrive about 9 February - and this ship will pick up two pairs of A380 wings rather than the normal load of one.

It adds that the assembly line also has a "bit of buffer", and there will be "no impact" on A380 production.

Airbus's fleet of A380 transport ships moves the various major structures to the French port of Pauillac, from where they are taken by barge and road convoy to Toulouse.