Now this is something you don’t see every day — a Qantas Boeing 747 with a fifth six tonne engine attached to the wing.
Image: aussiepomm on Imgur
— Qantas (@Qantas) January 6, 2016
“We’re undertaking this rare task to get our customers and our aircraft on their way as soon as possible — rather than shipping this engine across by boat or chartering a freighter aircraft,” Qantas explained in a statement.
The fifth engine wasn’t operational in any way. Here’s a quick look behind the scenes to see how it was attached:
— Qantas (@Qantas) January 7, 2016
Departing Sydney with a final destination of Johannesburg South Africa, the flight to first made a fuel stop in Perth. Extra fuel was needed due to additional drag the fifth engine caused.
“Additional drag is caused by air travelling around the spare engine during flight and, to counterbalance this, our pilots are trained to use the flight controls to ensure the aircraft flies straight, level and safely.” Qantas said.
Perth airport captured footage of the “special visitor” with an “extra passenger” on board coming in to land.
— Perth Airport (@PerthAirport) January 6, 2016
This article previously reported the engine weighed 10 tonnes. This has now been amended to the correct weight of six tonnes.