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33 people injured in evacuation drill for A380 super-jumbo
The Associated Press (apwire)     Print Article 
Published 2006-03-27 10:00 (KST)   
©2006 Airbus
HAMBURG, Germany--Thirty-three people were injured Sunday as they took part in a simulated emergency on Airbus' new A380 jetliner.

The company said one man broke his leg and 32 other people suffered minor injuries during the exercise in which 853 passengers and 20 crew exited the plane on slides in a darkened hangar.

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Some of the injured suffered friction burns from sliding down the escape ramps, Airbus spokesman Tore Prang said.

Despite the injuries, Airbus said the plane passed its test, with everybody out of the super-jumbo in about 80 seconds.

''That was a very great success,'' Airbus manager Gustav Humbert said after the test at its factory in the north German city of Hamburg.

The company had said that bringing 650 people out of the plane within 90 seconds would have been enough to meet safety requirements.

Construction problems have delayed the introduction of the double-deck A380, the largest passenger plane in the world. So far, 16 customers have ordered 159 of the planes, and the first examples are to go to Singapore Airlines at the end of the year.

Of the plane's 16 exits, just eight were used in the drill, which was mandatory in order for the A380 to receive its safety certification, Prang said.

Though the simulation was conducted inside a hangar, he said Airbus sought to make it as realistic as possible, strewing debris in the aisles. Air safety officials were on hand to observe the simulation.
©2006 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter The Associated Press

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