Beds, Herts & Bucks

Airlander 10 to submit 'up to £32m' insurance claim

Airlander on the ground Image copyright Andrew Buckley
Image caption Airlander collapsed while on the ground on 18 November

An insurance claim of up to £32m is being submitted by the company behind the world's longest aircraft.

The Airlander 10, a combination of a plane and an airship, collapsed while on the ground at its base last month.

Owner Hybrid Air Vehicles said the craft sustained "substantial damage" when it "detached from its moorings in light winds" and two people suffered minor injuries.

Assessments are being carried out and the craft is being recovered.

The inspection of the wreckage will take place in Hangar 2 at Cardington Airfield in Bedfordshire.

Image copyright Daren Eaton
Image caption The flight deck being recovered

An email to shareholders said: "The damage to the Airlander aircraft will result in a claim under our insurance policy of up to £32m, that being the maximum insured value."

It said that a "detailed inspection for damage will be completed" and it would decide whether to "repair or replace" the ship.

"This time, with so much experience in the team now, we are sure it will be a much more straightforward process," the company said.

"It will be a while before we are flying again."

Image copyright Hybrid Air Vehicles
Image caption Airlander 10 completed its last test flight on 17 November

The deflation happened less than 24 hours after a successful test flight on 17 November.

It had taken off at 15:11 GMT and landed at 16:18 GMT at Cardington Airfield.

Hybrid Air Vehicles said at the time it was in the "next phase of extended test flights".

In August 2016 it crash-landed after climbing to an excessive height because its mooring line became caught on power cables. No-one was hurt.

Image copyright sbna
Image caption The front of Airlander 10 hit the ground on its return to Cardington Airfield in 2016

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