Published on January 8th, 2021 | by Alan Dwyer


Irregularities found on Qatar Airbus A350 during Painting in Shannon

A Qatar Airways Airbus A350 was in Shannon recently for a repaint into a special paint scheme when some irregularities were found on the coating of the aircraft. The aircraft had arrived in Shannon on 13th November for a repaint by International Aerospace Coatings (IAC) into a special colours to promote the FIFA World Cup being held in Qatar in 2022. This is one of the first Airbus A350’s to receive a full new paint scheme. The repainting of the aircraft should take around ten days. However, when the aircraft was stripped engineers discovered surface coating irregularities. Engineers from Airbus in Toulouse travelled to Shannon to inspect the aircraft. It was decided that the aircraft would remain hangared in Shannon while temporary work was carried out. It was decided the aircraft would be ferried to Toulouse for further inspections by Airbus.

In a statement released by Airbus regarding the aircraft, it said “Whilst undergoing a repaint at Shannon, Qatar Airways’ Airbus A350-900 aircraft was observed to have some irregularities on the surface coating. The issue is superficial/cosmetic and only visible when the top coat of paint is stripped. It is not a structural composite issue! In agreement with Qatar Airways the aircraft will be flown to Toulouse for further inspection, as a precaution, and re-painting. There is no safety concern.”

The Airbus A350 being towed on to stand prior to departure. Photos by Oisín Tierney

This particular aircraft, A7-ALL, an Airbus A350-900 was only delivered in November 2016. On 7th July 2018, it was involved in an incident, when an AirAsia X A330 collided with it while parked on the apron in the Maldives. The aircraft was ferried from Shannon to Toulouse as the QR3172 on 5th January, departing from Shannon shortly before 3.00pm for the two hour flight.

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