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Tuesday, 22 May, 2001, 10:53 GMT 11:53 UK
Concorde to fly 'by summer'
BA Concorde
BA has been working on Concorde for several months
British Airways has said Concorde should be flying again by late summer.

Chief executive Rod Eddington said safety modifications to the fuel tanks were taking longer than expected, partly because the 25-year-old aircraft were effectively hand built.

The airline suspended its Concorde flights soon after one of Air France's supersonic jets crashed after take-off from Paris in July last year killing 113 people.

The return to service ultimately depends on the re-issue of a certificate of airworthiness by the Civil Aviation Authority and its French equivalent.


The Paris crash cost 113 lives
BA had hoped to have Concorde flying again by as early as last month.

Kevlar lining panels, which are designed to protect the tanks against tyre bursts, are having to be measured and made individually, because of differences between each of the supersonic planes.

Ninety-six German passengers on the charter flight to New York were killed when the Concorde caught fire and crashed close to Charles de Gaulle airport.

Nine crew members and eight people on the ground also perished in the crash, which led to the grounding of all Concordes owned by Air France and British Airways.

Investigators believe that a metal strip lying on the runway punctured one of Concorde's tyres, sending debris hurtling into the plane's fuel tanks, triggering a major leak and fire.

Earlier this month, lawyers representing relatives of victims said they had reached a compensation settlement with Air France.

All those involved are said to have agreed not to divulge the value of package, but in the past the airliner's insurers have said their offer comes close to $150m.

If that figure is correct, it would be the largest ever compensation deal agreed following an air crash.

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See also:

17 Apr 01 | Europe
Lawyers back Concorde cash deal
13 May 01 | Europe
Relatives accept Concorde cash
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