Qantas Pulls off Flying Two Planes inside a Boeing 747-400

20th Jan 2017

The cargo hold is an amazing part of an airplane, but did you know you can put another plane in it? Not just one, in fact, but two.

No, we are not talking about those big airships that were used in 1930s before someone thought of a better idea and started using ships. We are talking about an actual passenger airplane.

Don't believe us? Well, Australian Qantas not only pulled off fitting one sailplane into a cargo hold of its Boeing 747-400 plane between Johannesburg, South Africa and Sydney, Australia, but the airline managed to squeeze two planes.

Why, to make sure the gliders are delivered on time for the World Gliding Championship, which will be held in Benalla, Victoria.

Of course, in order to do this, Qantas engineers first had to take apart the sailplanes and place the rudders, wings and fuselage into specially designed shipping crates. But even this wasn't the end of the problem as they first had to measure if the crates, which were about seven meters long, would even fit through the cargo door or, once inside, if the boxes could fit inside the Boeing 747-400 belly.

Fortunately, they did. With about 100 millimeters spare space between the top of the boxes and the cargo hold ceiling.

Man Dies of Heart Attack on Qantas Flight

Meanwhile, more somber news comes from a Qantas' Melbourne-bound plane, as one of the passengers there suffered a cardiac arrest.

According to the St John's ambulance spokesperson, the man suffered a heart attack and died during the flight. This was despite the best efforts of the on-board nurse and the cabin crew to resuscitate the man and the timely arrival of the paramedics in Auckland.

The plane originally departed from Auckland Airport at 6:10 AM local time, bound for Melbourne, but had to turn back only half an hour into the flight because the man suffered a cardiac arrest and needed immediate aid.

The plane refueled and took off again for its original destination, Melbourne, but it was one passenger short.