At least three Airbus aircraft were suffered damage in yesterday’s fire at Middle East overhaul firm Gulf Aircraft Maintenance (Gamco), which started in an Airbus A300 said to belong to Qatar Airways.
Emerging details indicate that the effects of the fire at Gamco’s Abu Dhabi facility were more severe than initially indicated, with jets belonging to Kingfisher Airlines and Air Mauritius confirmed as being affected.
Air Mauritius had an Airbus A319 parked next to the A300. The airline has identified the twin-jet as a four-year old example, owned by the carrier, equipped with CFM International CFM56 engines.
“According to initial information the tail of the aircraft collapsed and parts fell on our aircraft,” says an Air Mauritius spokesman. “We do not know the extent of the damage and therefore cannot advise when the aircraft will be back in service.”
India’s Kingfisher Airlines says that it had an Airbus A320 in the same hangar awaiting a C1-check and installation of in-flight entertainment systems.
A spokesman for the carrier says that the International Aero Engines V2500-powered twin-jet, which is owned by lessor AerCap and is less than two years old, escaped with “little damage” although it was subjected to “falling debris”.
Qatar Airways has not confirmed that it is the operator of the A300 at the heart of the investigation, although there are increasing indications that the jet in question is an A300-600R and that the jet has sustained serious damage.
Gamco general manager Saif Al Mughairy tells flightglobal that, despite the fire, the maintenance operation itself should not be badly affected. He is not prepared to disclose details of the fire damage, beyond confirming that it started in an A300 aircraft, or the specific customers affected.
But he says that the company is otherwise operating “as normal” and that he is “very confident” that main investigation into the incident will be completed within four or five days.