The terrifying picture of a taped-up plane wing that went viral – but experts stay it’s still 100% safe to fly

A PICTURE of a plane wing covered in duct tape has shocked people online this week, but experts insist it’s nothing to worry about.

The photo, shared to Twitter by singer David Wakeham, shows the wing of a Qantas plane coated with strips of what looks like silver tape.

The tape is called speed tape and is used to repair peeling paint on wings


The tape is called speed tape and is used to repair peeling paint on wingsCredit: Getty

David was concerned about the Australian airline’s priorities and captioned the picture: “When choosing your favourite airline, choose wisely. @Qantas Profits before safety.”

However, ABC’s fact-checkers CheckMate had a look at the photo and got to the bottom of what the tape was doing there.

They explained that it was “speed tape” which is often used to cover paint damage caused by UV rays.

They said: “The tape pictured — known as speed tape — is used regularly in the aviation industry and, in this case, was likely applied to cover peeling paint.”

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The peeling paint is nothing more than an aesthetic problem, rather than a technical one.

A spokesperson for Boeing told aviation industry publication Simple Flying it was “a cosmetic issue only”.

It is not the first time speed tape has concerned passengers, with an airport worker sharing footage of the sticky stuff on TikTok earlier this year.

The TikToker asked: “Any other rampers notice this all the time?”

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However, users were quick to point out that it was speed tape and was used for minor repairs, rather than holding the plane together.

One said: “stopping corrosion with a piece of tape is cheaper than repainting it wholly. wings and body flex and break/chip the paint”.

Another revealed: “Most of those pieces aren’t structural and are just holding pieces that make the plane more aerodynamic. Same applies to missing screws and bolts”.

Speed tape is made with a combination of silicone or acrylic adhesive, and cloth and aluminium backing, which means that it’s not only incredibly sticky, but it’s also very durable.

It will even withstand temperatures ranging from -54C to 149C, is flame resistant and virtually waterproof.

For that reason, it can cost hundreds of pounds a roll.

According to one airline mechanic: “It’s approved by the manufacturer, FAA and company engineering department for certain repairs — always temporary.”

The tape reduces delays as airlines can patch up those small issues so the plane can take off, before it’s taken in for a more extensive repair according to One Mile At A Time.

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Another scary picture revealed the aftermath of a lightning strike on an easyJet plane last month.

This pilot explained what happens in the cockpit when they aren’t able to land because of bad weather.

The speed tape was seen on the wing of a Qantas plane last month


The speed tape was seen on the wing of a Qantas plane last month

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