SIA releases video of A380 flypast on National Day

SINGAPORE - National flag carrier Singapore Airlines (SIA) has released a video of its A380 flypast during National Day from the eyes of the pilot. 

The 1.04-minute video was posted on SIA's Facebook page on yesterday (Aug 14), and has since garnered 289k views and been shared over 4,200 times at last check at 10.30pm today (Aug 15). 

The video highlights the aircraft's journey from take-off at 5.02pm to the execution of the flypast at around 6.30pm on Aug 9, 2015, featuring cockpit views and the city skyline in the process. 

This year was the first time that the local airline had participated in the National Day Parade's (NDP) aeriel display as part of the nation's 50th anniversary celebrations. 

Wearing the livery of the Singapore flag, the A380 flew over the Marina Bay area at the closing of the Vintage Parade segment. 

The aircraft was flown by Captain Gerald Yeap, 61, who has clocked more than 13,000 flight hours. 

In an interview with SilverKris, Captain Yeap revealed that planning and coordination took almost a year. 

"My team and I have been practising the profile, timings and execution of the flypast many times in the simulator. The team has been meticulous and detailed in their planning, as well as catering for contingencies in the event of a non-normal situation. The cooperation we've received from external agencies such as the RSAF (Republic of Singapore Air Force) and CAAS (Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore) has been critical to its success. The result was a flawless execution at the preview show (on Aug 1, 2015) with just runs in the simulators."

It is understood that the aircraft was flying lower than normal altitude for commercial flights. Captain Yeap said that it was a "rare sight" to fly over the city at lower altitude. "Most times we see the skyline of Singapore from a distance but it's a privilege to overfly the business district, and on such an auspicious occasion," he said. 

Singapore's airspace was closed from 6.25pm to 7.10pm on National Day to facilitate the special NDP aerial displays over Marina Bay, according to The Straits Times.