Iron Maiden’s touring plane Ed Force One has been badly damaged on the ground at Santiago Airport in Chile. Two ground tug operators were injured in the collision and are recovering in hospital. The band are currently in the middle of their world tour and have said scheduled concerts are expected to go ahead as planned.

Bruce DickinsonIron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson.

The Boeing 747 had been tethered to a tow truck to be taken for refuelling, when the steering pin fell out causing the plane to collide with the ground tug while making a turn.

The jet’s undercarriage was badly damaged along with two of the aircrafts engines. Two ground tug operators were injured during the collision and taken to hospital.

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In a statement on Facebook the band said: “The flight engineers are on site and evaluating the damage, but their initial report is that the engines have suffered large damage and will require an extended period of maintenance and possibly two new engines.”

“We are currently making contingency arrangements to get to the show in Cordoba tomorrow with band, crew and equipment intact. Fortunately the 20 tons of equipment had not been loaded onto EF1 at the time of the accident."

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"Although this is tragic for our beautiful plane we do not expect this to affect our concert schedule including the next 2 shows in Cordoba and Buenos Aires.”

“And we hope to find a new Ed Force One to continue this adventure with us in the near future. We will keep everyone updated when we know more, so keep checking only on this site for official news.”