Incredible footage has emerged showing the decrepit remains of a Qantas 747 that has been stored in a Californian boneyard for more than eight years.
The video shows a battered cockpit and falling-apart cabin that would have sweltered in 40-degree temperatures during multiple summers.
Website aussieairliners.org says Qantas took delivery of the aircraft on 20 July 1992, and was later named City of Mandurah.
Qantas sold its last 747, VH-OEJ, along with five others to General Electric in 2019 and its last-known location was in the separate Mojave Desert boneyard.
Desert boneyards are preferred by airlines for storage – either temporary or permanent – because the 49-degree temperatures prevent rust and precipitation can be as low as just 130mm a year.
Little has been reported as to exactly what General Electric Co plans to do with the Qantas 747s.
VH-OEJ’s final journey in July 2020 included an emotional take-off to the tune of I Still Call Australia Home.
First-leg captain Sharelle Quinn flew the aircraft over Sydney’s CBD, Harbour and beaches before heading to the HARS Museum, where she dipped its wings in a final salute to the first 747-400 housed at the attraction, VH-OJA.
Then, unexpectedly, Quinn drew a 275-kilometre x 250-kilometre Qantas Kangaroo in the sky.
Last month, Australian Aviation reported how Qantas took taken original wall panels from one of its retired 747-200s stored a desert boneyard to recreate the aircraft’s 1970s upstairs lounge.
The custom-made replica will be displayed at the Qantas Founders Museum and showcases the 1970s first-class hangout where 15 first-class passengers could drink a cocktail or smoke a cigar.
The airline said fabrics and bold colours of the decade have been “meticulously recreated” to match the originals.
Accessed via a spiral staircase, the exclusive retreat was eventually phased out in 1979 and replaced with business class seating.
Qantas Founders Museum CEO Tony Martin said, “We are excited to be able to showcase this new exhibit within the Museum which will be able to take aviation and travel enthusiasts on a walk down memory lane for generations to come.”
Qantas donated funds raised from the 747 retirement joy flights in 2020 to help cover installation costs for the installation that will feature in the main exhibition hall.