Photos of damage to one of Air New Zealand's Boeing 777s at Los Angeles International Airport show an aircraft belonging to Iceland's Wow air near it.

The pictures show a sharp cut through part of the horizontal stabiliser at the tail of the Air New Zealand plane which was hit while parked at a gate at LA.

Air New Zealand engineers have arrived in Los Angeles to help with the repair of the 777-300 aircraft.

Flight NZ5 from Los Angeles to Auckland was cancelled just before boarding last night after it was hit by the plane undertow which had passed too close behind.


Air New Zealand is not commenting on the airline whose plane hit it but it was clipped by the main wing of the other aircraft.

The accident caused significant damage, the airline said.

A replacement part - about 10m long - will be flown from Dubai to Los Angeles.

All customers from the cancelled flight have been accommodated on alternative services out of Los Angeles.

Air New Zealand general manager customer experience Anita Hawthorne said 285 passengers had their flight cancelled.

Air New Zealand has been hit with aircraft shortages due to Dreamliner engine problems but so far the LAX accident has not affected the rest of its network.

The horizontal stabiliser is crucial to flying, preventing the up-and-down movement or pitching, motion of the aircraft nose.

Damage to the horizontal stabalizer of the Air NZ 777. Photo / Supplied
Damage to the horizontal stabalizer of the Air NZ 777. Photo / Supplied

Comment on the LAX incident has been sought from Wow.


Wow air specialises in ultra-cheap flights between Iceland and North America and flies to Los Angeles with Airbus A330s.

It was recently taken over by Iceland's flagship carrier, Icelandair, for about $40 million.

The airline had been struggling in a battle with Icelandair and it was and its sale was seen as a reality check for an industry hoping to apply the budget model to long-haul routes.

The seven-year-old Wow had offered flights for as little as $US90 across the Atlantic.