Not only in UK it seems...
US APOLOGIZES TO ITALY -- US HELICOPTERS BUZZED BEACH
The United States has apologized to Italy after three US military helicopters swooped low over an Italian beach earlier this week, sending beach furniture flying and injuring five people.
The incident Tuesday over a crowded beach on Italy's southeastern coast triggered memories for Italians of 1998, when a US Marine jet flying low sliced a ski gondola's cables, killing 20 people on an Italian mountainside. Italian newspapers reported yesterday that US Ambassador Mel Sembler, after being contacted by the Italian defense minister, issued an apology and asked US military authorities to investigate the incident in Barletta.
The US Embassy was closed yesterday for Assumption Day, an official Italian holiday, and Embassy officials could not immediately be reached for comment.
Corriere della Sera said that the US Army helicopters, a pair of CH-47 Chinooks and a Blackhawk, were on a peacekeeping mission that began in Germany, and after two stops in Italy, was headed to Kosovo across the Adriatic.
The newspaper's account suggested the US pilots were trying to perform a stunt. "Maybe, after six hours of flight from Germany toward Bari, swooping low over the beach at Barletta, greeting from above the girls in bikinis, like in old action movies, seemed like fun to the American soldiers,'' Corriere della Sera said. "But in a country still marked by the tragedy of Cermis, even a summer stunt by a squadron in transit risks transforming itself into an international incident,'' the Milan daily said.
In the ski gondola tragedy at the Mount Cermis ski resort, 20 people plunged to their deaths after a Marine jet flew so low it sliced the gondola's cables. Both Italian and American investigators concluded that the EA-6B Prowler jet was flying too low and too fast.
A year after the accident, Italy and the United States reached an accord on tightening restrictions on low flights.
A prosecutor in northern Italy near Aviano said he was investigating whether the new flight restrictions were violated in the flight over Barletta. "We need to clarify whether it was a flight plan violation or if the pilots were authorized to fly that kind of overflight, which is prohibited by our laws,'' said Padua Prosecutor Sergio Dini.