Old 23rd Dec 2013, 13:22
  #96 (permalink)  
tucumseh
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: uk
Posts: 2,848
Orca

Interesting question, given a non functioning IFF system was regarded as "Go" even after a GR4A being shot down because of it.

I think a good point was made above. A CWS was endorsed for Tornado in 1998, yet is still not fitted. SOMEONE assessed the pros and cons discussed here and endorsed it - in 1998 that would need to be pretty senior in OR.

Getting back to the July 2012 crash, Hammond has recently claimed this endorsement only dates from 2008, stating that is not sufficient time for it to be fitted in July 2012, so MoD can't be blamed.

At best, Hammond knowingly misled. But given MoD's form in such matters, it is a probably a deliberate lie. As usual, one must follow the lies to uncover the truth. The lie is about the endorsement and funding dates, tests and trials.

Exactly the same happened after the Patriot shootdown of 2003. ACM Sir Brian Burridge's direction that the IFF be made safe was ignored, for more than 6 years. He is also content the Board of Inquiry was grossly misled. Yet he is sanguine about this, meaning (presumably) he was over-ruled from on high. Which, again, must be pretty senior.

Similarly, one must ask WHO these over-rules and lies protect. Who decided that Tornado GR4 (in this case) need not be functionally safe? Again, the perpetrators have form. Sir Brian was ONLY a 3 Star at the time, whereas the people who, in the period 1998-2002, ruled that the aircraft need not be safe were led by a 4 star. Just a little above our pay grade, but that doesn't absolve one of the legal obligation to report the Organisational Failing. Only one person in PE did, as well as Boscombe Down. Both were told to shut up. Boscombe did.

There is MUCH more to this than just the CWS/TCAS question. The same basic policy decision, that aircraft need not be functionally safe, permeates umpteen fatal accidents, and MoD simply does not want this link publicised. But the Nimrod, Tornado/Patriot and Chinook cases, especially, have raised the profile and made the policy public, so it will be interesting what direction the Procurator Fiscal issues in this case.
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