Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Virgin Australia Embraer E-190 VH-ZPB Departs Australia For Good

Last Monday 28 November, Virgin Australia Embraer E-190 VH-ZPB is reported to have departed Australia for good, flying out of Brisbane for Apia (Tonga) as VOZ9901.  It has since continued to Honolulu (Hawaii), Van Nuys (California) and Nashville (Tennessee) for post-lease maintenance.

VH-ZPB at Gladstone Airport recently  (File photo)

VH-ZPB is now the seventh Virgin Australia E-190 that has been withdrawn from the fleet (for now) and be transferred to other operators or storage.  VH-ZPD, VH-ZPG, VH-ZPF, VH-ZPE, VH-ZPJ and VH-ZPL have already left Australia.  Of interest, the second-to-last E-190 to depart Australia was VH-ZPJ - see referring Blog post HERE - and has now recently ferried from Nashville to Pinal Park, Marana (Arizona).

VH-ZPB was originally delivered to Virgin Blue at the start of April in 2008 and took up the name 'Rio de Gold Coast'.  After re-painting into the new Virgin Australia livery, it then wore the name ‘Bicheno Beach’.

VH-ZPB in Virgin Blue livery at Rockhampton Airport  (File photo)

It's sad to see the E-190s disappearing - it was also reported in mid-June this year that Virgin Australia will eventually withdraw all remaining Embraer E-190 jets, as well as between four and six ATR 72 turboprops, on a cost-cutting program across all parts of the airline which will also include an unspecified number of job losses.

It was interesting to note that VH-ZPB's final visit(s) to CQ were on Thursday 17 November when it operated return flights from Brisbane into both Rockhampton (as VOZ1239/1240) and Mackay (as VOZ613/616).

Photo taken by Col  ©

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