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Old 2nd Aug 2016, 22:29
  #2781 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 777

I suppose that where we might (gently) disagree is the way forward from where we seem to be. Also, I think it's important to try to post stuff for those reading this thread who are still doing the job - we owe it to them to not only tell the truth, but also to explain and where we can, offer a way forward. And hope. In this case, for the Air Cadets. Let's try that first.

I think the majority of the aircraft will be fixable. Cost and lack of technical expertise (to allow fast and good decisions) will, however, slow the process. On the bright side, no cadets or instructors (to my knowledge) have been hurt, and some will get back into the sky in airworthy aircraft. Keeping them that way will be the challenge. For gliders like this, that's not a big challenge. Honestly, it's really not. The big danger is that the RAF and the MoD go ahead and repeat the same mistakes they have been making now for some years. I'd suggest that one way to ensure a good organisation emerges from this would be to form a 'greybeard' team under the auspices of, oh, I don't know, let's suggest the RAeS's Airworthiness and Maintenance Group, to offer sage and experienced advice. I've seen it done in the US to very good effect.

I also believe that a full independent enquiry into this latest airworthiness scandal (judge led and staffed by reputable aerospace experts) is needed to really get the lessons out there.

I absolutely understand your point about needing a regulator (and inspector) that is more independent. My problem is not so much the idea, as where it would be located. Outside of HM Government? Funded how? Charitable giving? ANY organisation that gets money from the Government eventually becomes part of 'the Establishment'. At the end of the day, the MoD and the RAF have also to heal themselves. In my view (and thats all it is) the key way forward will be with good young engineers given a chance to do the right things at the working level. I always have huge confidence in the ability of young people to do amazing things. For all our opinions, right now the future is in their hands - and I trust them to get it right.

Best regards as ever to all the young engineers out there

Engines is offline