It’s not every day you see something like this. Then again, this also isn’t the first time that something like this has happened.
How an Air India plane got stuck under a bridge
Video has gone viral of a former Air India Airbus A320 getting stuck underneath a bridge on the Delhi-Gurugram highway near Delhi Airport.
Now, in fairness, this mishap has nothing to do with Air India as such. The plane no longer belongs to Air India, and was in the process of being transported in order to be scrapped, with the wings removed. This mistake is the fault of the company responsible for transporting the plane.
As an Air India spokesperson explains:
“This is an old, scrapped aircraft which has already been sold off by us. There is no additional information as it involves the person to whom it has been sold off. The aircraft certainly does not belong to the Delhi airport’s fleet and in the video, it is being transported without any wings. It appears to be a scrapped plane and the driver may have made a judgement of error while transporting it.”
It’s pretty amazing that the plane is basically halfway underneath the bridge before the truck carrying it comes to a stop. It seems that the nose and front of the plane likely cleared the bridge without issue, while there was something sticking up around the middle of the plane, which caused the problem.
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not an expert on trucking logistics, but I’d assume that if you’re transporting an aircraft, you’d figure out exactly how much clearance you need (from the highest point of the aircraft), and then make sure you don’t get under a bridge with less clearance than that. But maybe that’s just me… 😉
This isn’t the first time this has happened
In 2019, a truck carrying a former India Post Boeing 737-200 got stuck under a bridge in West Bengal, so this Air India incident is the second time in a couple of years that we’ve seen something like this happen in India.
For that matter, even that wasn’t the first time such an incident had happened. Also in 2019, a China Southern Airbus A320 got stuck under a bridge in Harbin, China.
So, how do you get a plane “unstuck” from under a bridge? The solution seems to be to let air out of the tires of the trucks, so that they have just enough clearance to get out from under the bridge. On the plus side, at least it seems like in all of these cases there wasn’t any significant damage to the bridges.
A former Air India Airbus A320 got stuck underneath a bridge in Delhi, which is the third such incident we’ve seen in the past couple of years. While I imagine the logistics of transporting an aircraft fuselage are complicated, it’s still surprising to me that this has happened a few times now in a fairly short period.
Generally the solution here is to let air out of the tires. I suppose the damage to the plane isn’t a huge deal if the plane is just going to get scrapped, though the damage to the bridge is a different story.