There are no reported injuries and minor damage to two Airbus A320 aircraft after a small collision on the ground at Santiago Airport in Chile, though somebody on the ground crew is going to be in a lot of trouble.
While passengers were disembarking a plane registered as CC-BAE parked in lot No. 20 of what is also known as Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport, the left wing tip of the craft was struck by the leading edge of the wing of another plane, CC-BFL, which was being moved into tarmac lot No. 21 by a ground crew.
Reports, like this one from elmonstrador.cl, indicate there were fortunately no passengers on the second plane and no injuries were reported among the passengers disembarking. Though the plane with passengers did lose the curved tip of its wing in the collision, according to photos from the scene.
Official reports and the lettering painted on the planes in the images identify the aircraft as both being the Airbus A320 flying for Latam Airlines, which is headquartered in Santiago. Here’s the company statement following today’s minor bump-up (via airlive.net):
...This morning a minor incident occurred between two aircraft at Santiago Airport. The contact between the two planes occurred when personnel from the supplier company towed one of the planes without passengers.
While two images of the damage from inside the plane with passengers were spread around social media quickly, later photos reported by La Cuarta, which I can’t publish on Jalopnik, show the carnage from the ground. You can see the damage to the leading edge of CC-BFL, where it cut through the wing of CC-BAE and sheared off its little flipped-up A320 wing tip, which is lying on the ground directly below. Those photos also show the cone likely meant to mark the wing distance between the planes, and from the pictures, the tip of CC-BFL’s wing is way over the cone.
A brand-new Airbus A320 starts at over $100 million to buy today, according to Business Insider, and while I don’t imagine they’ll have to throw the entire plane out for just this tarmac wing-dinger, I bet the cost of that fancy flipped-up tip costs more than an embarrassed Santiago Airport ground worker’s salary.