Misadventure on a Qantas A380

After a two month trip around the world, we are finally home – but we only just made it.

My wife and I had the bad luck to wind up flying on the ‘exploding’ Qantas A380 and the good luck to survive the experience. Qantas called the incident an ‘uncontained engine failure’. Other, more matter-of-fact, people called it an ‘explosion’.

All I can say is that I feel lucky to be alive and that I call our Captain, Richard de Crespigny, an ‘absolute champion’.

Damaged Qantas A380 engine

Engine damage on the Qantas A380 in Singapore

He and his crew somehow managed to successfully land a wounded, malfunctioning, unbalanced A380, which was leaking fuel and carrying almost 500 passengers. He stayed calm, took control of the situation and reassured everyone else with his confidence.

He even hung around afterwards to answer everyone’s questions and gave out his mobile phone number in case we had any questions or problems later… Champion.

I must apologise to our readers for the rather long hiatus. I had planned to write some posts that could be published while I was away, but my real job got in the way and I didn’t find the time to do so before leaving.

Leaving the Qantas A380

Looking across the tarmac at the A380, as we're transported to the terminal by bus. (Look at all the fire engines and police cars!)

In addition there were some technical problems which Younggil needed me to fix, so he wasn’t able to post either :(.

Rest assured that we now have plenty of things on the drawing board to make it up to you guys. I’ll be back with a more Go related post soon.

Speaking of Go, this is ostensibly a Go site. Here are some lessons from this experience which can be applied to Go:

Captain Richard de Crespigny

The calm and collected Captain Richard de Crespigny

  • Learning to control your emotions and stay calm is critical if you want to become a real master, whether it’s playing Go or flying planes.
  • There’s no substitute for practise. It’s clear that Qantas’ crew were highly trained, and that is what saved us. Captain de Crespigny said he practises the engine failure scenario 3-4 times every quarter in the simulator.
  • When you’re in trouble, you need to take calculated risks. Note that we’re talking about calculated rather than reckless risks. Reckless risk taking just kills stones, and people.

In the last photo you can see a small group of the media vultures. This is nothing compared to the circus that was the media at immigration, but unfortunately I didn’t have my phone on to take a photo at that time.

Photographing the photographers: A small group of the media pack who hounded us. This is nothing compared to the circus that was the media at immigration, but unfortunately I didn't have my phone on to take a photo.

Check out that female reporter on the right, she clearly doesn’t like strangers taking photos of her. Funny that, neither do I…

About David Ormerod

David is a Go enthusiast who’s played the game for more than a decade. He likes learning, teaching, playing and writing about the game Go. He's taught thousands of people to play Go, both online and in person at schools, public Go demonstrations and Go clubs. David is a 5 dan amateur Go player who competed in the World Amateur Go Championships prior to starting Go Game Guru. He's also the editor of Go Game Guru.

You can follow Go Game Guru on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Youtube.


  1. Wow. This is amazing. Definitely a good post to relate to Go. Glad to hear you are safe and looking forward to more posts!