Emirates Airbus A380 Possibly Damaged by Drone on Landing in Nice

A recent landing at Nice , France, might have been more eventful than anticipated. On August 18th, an A380-800, flying as flight EK77 from to Nice under Emirates Airlines, might've collided with a “large drone,” according to the Aviation Safety Network.

The aftermath? The mammoth double-decker aircraft showed visible damage on the part of its leading wing edge. The situation led to the grounding of the aircraft and the consequent cancellation of its return flight to Dubai. The damaged wing component has since been replaced.

The French investigation agency BEA has taken up the matter. They've confirmed that they're “investigating the incident,” but at this juncture, they cannot unequivocally confirm if a drone was actually involved.

As the situation unfolds, the aircraft remains at the Nice airport, and the alleged drone operator remains unidentified.

This isn't an isolated incident of drones and airplanes crossing paths. Reports often come about near-misses, sometimes even damage, because of drones. But, it's worth noting that while pilots frequently report these encounters, it's not always conclusively proven that a drone was the offender.

Emirates Airbus A380 Possibly Damaged By Drone On Landing In Nice

Still, caution is the catchphrase. Aviation authorities continually emphasize awareness and caution when drones are used near airports.

The Nice incident again brings to the forefront the critical importance of rules and regulations in the drone world.

Photos courtesy of Aviation Safety Network and NiceMatin.

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Haye Kesteloo
Haye Kesteloo

Haye Kesteloo is the Editor in Chief and Founder of DroneXL.co, where he covers all drone-related news, DJI rumors and writes drone reviews, and EVXL.co, for all news related to electric vehicles. He is also a co-host of the PiXL Drone Show on YouTube and other podcast platforms. Haye can be reached at haye @ dronexl.co or @hayekesteloo.

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2 Comments

  1. I smell BS, and if not then that drone is a big ol piece of kit and not generally used by average joe using a mavic 3 sized drone, news/tv? emergency services?

    • Think about how much damage a tiny light weight bullet can do. A 13gram bullet traveling 1756 knots could easily damage a plane.

      Now a the plane is traveling at 160+ knots so quite a bit slower. But, even a small mini drone weights 250 grams. 250gram mass slamming into the plane at 160 knots will do some damage. A larger drone can be 600+ grams and that not even the bigger tv/movie drones. So yea, a normal drone can damage a plane.

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