Boeing 747 Freighter Tips Backwards At Doha’s Hamad Airport After Cargo Load Imbalance

On Saturday night, a Fars Air Qeshm Boeing 747 Freighter tipped backward at Doha’s Hamad International Airport (DOH) due to a cargo load imbalance.

Fars Air Qeshm Boeing 747
The Boeing 747 Freighter ended up on its tail. Photo: Aeronews.

What are the details?

Fars Air Qeshm Flight QFZ9964 from Yerevan, Armenia (EVN) to Doha, Qatar (DOH) arrived at the Hamad International Airport at 2:50 am local time.

According to Aeronews, cargo handlers unloaded the Boeing 747-281, registration number EP-FAB, incorrectly. As a matter of fact, they unloaded the cargo from the nose of the aircraft first. Consequently, the aircraft became tail heavy and tipped backward.

Boeing 747 Freighter Damage
The aircraft tipped backward during unloading. Photo: Aeronews.

At this time, it is not clear what kind of damage the aircraft sustained. Additionally, we do not know if anybody was injured.


Fars Air Qeshm

Fars Air Qeshm is an Iranian cargo airline. The airline operates only one aircraft, the damaged Boeing 747 -281.

The airline’s headquarters are located at the Qeshm International Airport in Dayrestan, Iran.


Last fall, Western intelligence agencies suspected the airline of smuggling weapons into Beirut, Lebanon, after a couple of suspicious flights. Allegedly, the airline used the aircraft to deliver weapons to Hezbollah.


Incidents of aircraft tipping backward are really not that uncommon. As a matter of fact, some aircraft are more prone to tipping than others. One example of an aircraft that tips rather easily is the Boeing 737-900. Consequently, several airlines use special tail stands for these aircraft when they are parked.

Additionally, this type of incident is typically more common for cargo aircraft. After all, it is very unlikely that all passengers on a passenger aircraft will rush to the back of the aircraft all of a sudden, leaving the front of the aircraft is pretty much empty.

Anyhow, it is definitely unfortunate for Fars Air Qeshm that its only aircraft sustained damage due to the incident.

Have you ever seen an aircraft sitting on its tail? Share your stories with us.


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David Hoffman 5

With a nose unload operation it should have been relatively easy to move all the palllets forward simultaneously.


“After all, it is very unlikely that all passengers on a passenger aircraft will rush to the back of the aircraft all of a sudden, leaving the front of the aircraft is pretty much empty.”

This reminds me of a Pakistani Airways Boeing 707 many years ago that was en route from Jeddah to Karachi carrying Muslim pilgrims. There was a fire in the rear of the aircraft probably caused by one of the stoves that the pilgrims carried with them. Everyone rushed to the front and the plane’s alignment was disrupted causing it to crash with the loss of all on board.


Great publicity for DOH, the airline and Boeing. “We move our tail for YOU”! “Nose up tail down”!

Mark Petry

I routinely see 737s parked at the gate with a piece of AGE attached to a socket in the tail to prevent exactly this sort of thing. when unfueled, the CG is right over the main landing gear


@Sam – It was probably a Saudia Airline L-1101 Tristar that you have in mind. It is believed to have caught fire when a passenger lit a stove to heat tea or coffee. However, investigations did not confirm the speculation. See wikipedia