Emirates Airline is concerned public perception of the Airbus A380 will be jeopardised by the engine failure aboard a Qantas A380 flight this week and encouraged airframer Airbus and engine maker Rolls-Royce to take preventative steps to avoid another blow-out.
Although Emirates uses a completely different engine aboard its A380s than the one which exploded on the Qantas flight above Indonesia, the Dubai airline is by far the world's largest customer of the extra-large aircraft, with a total of 90 on order and plans to acquire more in the future.
The engine failure was an "enormously big wake-up call", Tim Clark (CK), the president of Emirates, told Bloomberg in London on Wednesday.
"We really don't want this aircraft tarnished with a reputation for failures in certain areas," he said. "We're concerned and watching very closely."
Emirates uses engines made by GE and Pratt & Whitney's Engine Alliance joint venture on its 14 A380s, while Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines and Qantas use the Rolls-Royce Trent 900.
"Most of the flying public isn't even aware that there are two types of engines available on the A380," said Yan Derocles, an aviation analyst at Paris-based Oddo Securities. "But normally, when you have incidents or accidents, there's an immediate impact on bookings, but soon after occupancy rates return to normal."