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Air Cadets grounded?

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Air Cadets grounded?

Old 4th Jan 2019, 07:10
  #4701 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: West Sussex
Age: 77
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Squawking, I can only state the blindingly obvious. The RAF is riddled with unairworthiness. An unairworthy air force isn't a national asset but a national liability. Of the many airworthiness related fatal accident threads in this forum, only one can be ascribed to enemy action (the Iraq Hercules) but all can be ascribed to the dysfunctional state of UK Air Safety resulting from RAF VSO incompetence, malevolence, hubris, and ignorance. It is thus a vital national security issue and has to be put right. Who pays for it? Why, the PBTP! Who else? This is going to be a very demanding challenge and requires leadership of the highest calibre to regain the professionalism and dedication that my generation were the beneficiaries of, though blissfully unaware of at the time.

To be honest, money will be the least of the challenges. Government will have to re-arrange the goal posts and no doubt find new money as well. If the new MAA and MAAIB are to be truly independent then I cannot see them being funded out of the Defence Budget for therein lies dependence. I've always preferred a sistering with the CAA and AAIB respectively, in order to cross fertilise the professional experience therein. In that scenario they would be part of the DoT, with an Aviation Authority being split into Civil and Military Depts, likewise with Air Accident Investigation, all with civilian DGs. From the very start both will have to assert themselves over a truculent operator, ie the MOD. Sean Cunningham died because his seat was unairworthy, a direct reflection of the UK Military Air Regulator, aka the MAA, aka the MOD. In future such maladministration must have legal consequences. We need a Regulator and Investigator with teeth, instead of the present toothless dependents.

You are right to remind us that those institutions that would be normally expected to deal with such illegality have reneged on their responsibilities and duty, with the honourable exception of the 700 year old HM Coroners Service. The implications are indeed worrying, but if something along the lines of what I propose above is instituted then they will be dealing with official legal bodies rather than concerned citizens as now. That will hopefully encourage them to do their job rather than deciding not to.

Last edited by Chugalug2; 4th Jan 2019 at 07:23. Reason: People who do not now do their duty
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 10:13
  #4702 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
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...........

" ... with the honourable exception of the 700 year old HM Coroners Service."
Are you sure about that Chug ? It's not the general impression I'm getting, from my rather PPrejudiced position.

LFH

...........
Lordflasheart is offline  
Old 4th Jan 2019, 11:04
  #4703 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2000
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Originally Posted by squawking 7700 View Post
But Chuggy, who would pay for an independent UK Military Air Regulation and Mil AAIB and for them to be independent of each other?............they'd be government funded, which means exactly the same strings are pulled re. Civil Police, Service Police, SoS's, MPs, Senior Civil Servants, HoC's and Lords Committees, HSE, QC's, HM Coroners when backsides need to be covered..........nothing is ever completely 'independent'.
Squawking 7700, I’ve had the same discussion with Chug and Tuc about this - nothing is completely ‘independent’ and the UKAAIB work for DfT as does the CAA, and the SoS for Transport within DfT holds safety responsibility for UK registered aircraft. So guess what, they aren’t ‘independent’ either! Also, if we took it outside of MOD or DfT then this independent body would still be Government funded and so still not truly ‘independent’.

The best defence we have is ‘whistleblowing’ and the likes of the following book (written by someone very close to this thread):
Amazon Amazon




That holds people to account when all else fails in my humble opinion as it tends to embarrass politicians - and they don’t like that!
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 11:08
  #4704 (permalink)  
 
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Taken from the 'Air Cadet Central' forum. 645 Sqn at RAF Topcliffe converting onto the new stealth gliders!


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Old 4th Jan 2019, 11:13
  #4705 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Chug and Lordflasheart

If I could butt in and say I think you are both correct. Messrs Masters and Walker (Wilts & Oxon) showed their mettle. Both were apoplectic at being lied to by MoD, and were happy to take evidence (MoD documents, downloaded from the internet) from the public that MoD denied the existence of. In the case of L/Cpl Matty Hull, Mr Walker said **** you to the US Government and revealed to the family that they had been lied to by MoD - that there was indeed a cockpit video of the attack.

On the other hand, the Coroner who presided over the Sea King ASaC Inquest in 2007 should only be given one choice. He condoned outright lies and told the father of one pilot to sit down and shut up when he tried to offer the truth. It is easier to say which of the Coroner's Rules he complied with. The families were then quoted over £3k + VAT each for a copy of the transcript. Bluff called and his behaviour is there on tape for all to hear. So much so, he actually drowns out witnesses giving evidence, as he isn't interested and is chatting to others in the court.

In the Flt Lt Cunningham case, the Lincolnshire Coroner didn't perform particularly well at the Inquest itself in 2014. Or perhaps it is fairer to say his Officers and Investigators didn't, because unlike Oxon and Wilts they refused to take evidence from the public that MoD, again, denied having. However, on 6 February last year, before sentencing of Martin-Baker, he forwarded MoD papers to the Judge (again, provided by the public) which wholly refuted the HSE allegation and proved both it and MoD had misled the court. The Judge didn't read them, simply accepting the HSE's word they were irrelevant. My view is that both she and the HSE should have heard alarm bells at the public providing key information that both MoD and Philip Dunne MP (Def Min) had denied the existence of. So, having been misled in 2014, when advised of the truth Mr Fisher did the right thing.

When MoD denies all knowledge of (e.g.) Explosion Suppressant Foam, and a family QC stands up and hands the Coroner two MoD ESF specifications, a competent Coroner is only going to believe one of them. In such circumstances there is no room for interpretation. Unless MoD claims the evidence is somehow forged. In the Chinook ZD576 case it continued to deny the content of a report by the Director of Flight Safety, even briefing Liam Fox (Secy of State) to issue a denial to the House. That was after the author had given evidence to Lord Philip that he had written the report. At least Fox had the decency to retract; although in a letter to another Minister, not to the House. But MoD carried on denying. That's the level of deranged stupidity we're dealing with here. All this has been published and MoD hasn't thought to offer a challenge.

PS I understand the proceeds of that book above go to Medecins sans Frontieres. Help for Heroes benefits from Vol.2. I think the forthcoming Vol.3 will be St Richard's Hospice in Worcester. Nice one Lima.
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 11:48
  #4706 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: across the border....
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LJ,
That was my point, regardless of whether it's the AAIB or a Mil AAIB manned by civi's/mil personnel or any other watchdog organisation, the purseholder (government) ultimately pulls the strings (and I don't mean financially) when it's deemed to be necessary e.g. when a significant stakeholder (could be the MoD.......) thinks it's not in their or certain people's interests to be exposed.

I'd agree that public whistleblowing disclosure is perhaps the only way to effect change, the MoD will not, as it's not in their interests, allow independent (as much as there would ever be true independence) investigation - could you ever see the government taking that away from the MoD?
And let's face it, there's been quite a lot of whisleblowing but has it changed the MoD's approach either to airworthiness or investigation of the after effects.?

As I said, it would take something on the scale of a large transport/surveillance/tanker aircraft to impact a city with tens or hundreds of lives lost where the root cause was a lack of airworthiness, before there's a fundamental change in investigation and by whom. One or two lives lost here and there, sad as the causes were, where only service personnel are involved will not effect that change toward independant investigation.
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 12:07
  #4707 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
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Originally Posted by BBK View Post
LJ

Members of the VGS community have been specifically told not to post on PPRuNe. As such a right of reply is difficult to your defamatory remarks.

However, I will report your comments via the appropriate channels.

BBK

Edited to add: the order regarding PPRuNe is specifically regarding the current grounding not a general prohibition which is just as well as the Air Cadet organisation does a fantastic job IMHO.
A bit late to the party, but just spotted this gagging reference.
JM hated social media. There was an equivalent site used by ACO staff and cadets known as Air Cadet Central. Several members of that forum were hounded out of the organisation by JM who even involved the CivPol when a CFAV posted something about him. Ironically I only discovered the forum when it was mentioned in Wing Routine Orders.
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 15:21
  #4708 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 694
.........

Squawk77
-
" ... it would take something on the scale of a large transport/surveillance/tanker aircraft to impact a city with tens or hundreds ... "
The A400M crash at Seville in May 2015 wasn't far off that scenario. Reports of A400 Crash, Saville, Spain

As I understand it, any accident report, whether military or civil, will not be made publicly available. No-one seems to know who has jurisdiction. I am not even sure if any final formal report has been completed. I suppose there has been (or will be) some kind of coroners inquest.

LFH
...........
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 15:45
  #4709 (permalink)  
 
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JM hated social media.
Then he would have also hated a certain retired 3 Star who used to act as MoD's mouthpiece on the Mull of Kintyre thread! Oddly enough, the same 3 Star under whose command the 'savings at the expense of safety' policy was developed, which as JM surely knows by now lies at the root of these problems.
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Old 4th Jan 2019, 20:23
  #4710 (permalink)  
 
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S7700, the reformed MAA and MilAAIB will be no sinecures, those who man them will be fighting two deadly opponents, aviation accidents and the MOD, and from day one. It won't be easy, but they will be carrying out their appointed duty in doing so. When they find operator shortcomings they must ensure that corrective action is taken promptly in order to avoid avoidable accidents. To do that they must have powers to enforce such action. That is where it gets really difficult. These are unchartered waters I admit, and nothing less than a complete revelation of all the evidence of illegal orders and actions, of subverting and suborning the mandated regulations, and so wilfully ignored by all the institutions charged with enforcing the law and punishing transgressors, will suffice. Aviation does not tolerate fudge, is indifferent to solemn and biding undertakings, it only respects 24hr continuous professional input to tame its suicidal tendencies.

I take your point that you and LJ make, that as publicly funded bodies they will be subject to Government interference from time to time. As I say, this will be no sinecure, and success in carrying out their mission will depend on the character and steadfastness of their leaders. Why would they want such a thankless task? Because I am convinced there are those who truly believe in ensuring Air Safety, not for bling, not for sinecure jobs in industry, but for the professional satisfaction of spending a worthwhile lifetime saving lives. Such people exist, such people post here, all they need is the opportunity to do what they know, what they believe in.

I am no starry eyed idealist. Life is never black or white, but many shades of grey (can't quite remember just how many for the moment). The CAA and AAIB have both had days they'd prefer to forget I'm sure, and the same will be true of the MAA and MilAAIB, but at least they can try to effect what they are now utterly unable to do, that is to carry out their responsibilities without constant meddling from the MOD's little helpers. There is a mountain of dross to be cleared up, making Stygian Stable duty appear to be a doddle. A lot of compromises will be needed to avoid grounding the entire UK Military Airfleet, but at least it will be recognised, assessed, and acknowledged. None of that happens now; there were no illegal orders, no subverting of the Regs, no substituting dedicated professional engineers with young ignorant non-engineers, no junior scapegoats (some of who died in the Grossly Unairworthy Aircraft they were manning), nothing to see here, we've all got homes to go to.

I'm surprised you put your faith in whistle blowers while acknowledging that the very people they inform either take no action or alternatively when they do, it's often not against the perpetrator but against the informer. As tuc tells us, it is official MOD policy that issuing an order to suborn the Regs is not an offence, while refusing to obey it is! Only an official body can hope to tackle such corrupt attitudes, individuals will simply be crushed.

LFH, I only excepted the Coroners Service because some of its Coroners have stood up for families and justice (though others have not). That you have issues with that generalisation I fully accept. I just take heart from anyone willing to do the right thing. It is my belief that when an example is set of doing the right thing, others are encouraged to do the same. We need to have faith in such people and remind ourselves of what is right and what is wrong.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 14:39
  #4711 (permalink)  
 
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Some of you may be interested in the Feb issue of Pilot magazine, which contains a full flight test of a Slingsby Type 31/Cadet TX Mk.3. Kind of ironic that WT900 is still airworthy and serviceable, while most of the Grob Vikings that superseded it aren't.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 15:40
  #4712 (permalink)  
 
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Some of you may be interested in the Feb issue of Pilot magazine, which contains a full flight test of a Slingsby Type 31/Cadet TX Mk.3. Kind of ironic that WT900 is still airworthy and serviceable, while most of the Grob Vikings that superseded it aren't.
I understand that there are more ex Air Cadet T31/Cadet TX Mk3 and Slingsby Sedburgh T21s in private hands flying on a regular basis than there are "recovered" Grob Vikings. Says it all really!
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 20:35
  #4713 (permalink)  
 
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I'm sure there are. There are also more airworthy ex-Air Cadet Slingsby T.61F Ventures than Grob 109 Vigilants. Which does indeed "say it all" Freda!
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 09:00
  #4714 (permalink)  
 
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Recovered Vikings

I think you will find that there are now plenty of 'recovered' (ex SS) Vikings back at Syerston or en route, so why is the 'system' not using them.
Probably because they threw the baby out with the bathwater in their haste to reorganise a system that did not need it.
The 'schools' operated despite the lack of a capable 'Head Office'; when the schools went so did the capability, and rebuilding is a huge task.
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Old 10th Jan 2019, 08:48
  #4715 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by VX275 View Post
Just for the record, reengining the Vigilants with Rotax 912 and the installation of a 'glass cockpit' was being promised to the staff of the VGS's BEFORE the pause.
We all knew that was BS!
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Old 12th Jan 2019, 08:14
  #4716 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by DaveUnwin View Post
I'm sure there are. There are also more airworthy ex-Air Cadet Slingsby T.61F Ventures than Grob 109 Vigilants. Which does indeed "say it all" Freda!
Pretty sure I saw a Venture at Shobdon a couple of weeks back, too.
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Old 13th Jan 2019, 16:39
  #4717 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
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Followed with interest the discussion on root cause as well as the effect. Unfortunately, whilst the focus on air worthiness has consumed us, gnawing away in the background, the MoD has disposed of the real estate! Even if the money was found for a new ACO VGS fleet, sadly, many “almost perfect for air cadet training” regional airfields have been sold off.

Nonetheless, there remains opportunity for conventional air cadet gliding with new aiircraft to return. Given the Political will and a relatively small amount of funding. The U.K. coukd relaunch ACO Gliding within an ICAO recognised and compliant Next Generation U.K. Aviation Professionals programme....
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Old 13th Jan 2019, 21:37
  #4718 (permalink)  
 
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DU & TMM you are correct! ZA656 still going strong.
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Old 13th Jan 2019, 23:04
  #4719 (permalink)  
 
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Ditto XZ560!
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Old 14th Jan 2019, 11:36
  #4720 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Originally Posted by Capt Beaky View Post
Followed with interest the discussion on root cause as well as the effect. Unfortunately, whilst the focus on air worthiness has consumed us, gnawing away in the background, the MoD has disposed of the real estate! Even if the money was found for a new ACO VGS fleet, sadly, many “almost perfect for air cadet training” regional airfields have been sold off.

Nonetheless, there remains opportunity for conventional air cadet gliding with new aiircraft to return. Given the Political will and a relatively small amount of funding. The U.K. coukd relaunch ACO Gliding within an ICAO recognised and compliant Next Generation U.K. Aviation Professionals programme....




Halton hasn't been disposed of - yet.
In my experience, the flooding which used to occur at Halton during the winter months (causing us to 'bolthole' to Bovingdon) would preclude it from being suitable for housing, especially as a large amount of the airfield has PSP or steel mesh tracking just below the surface.
Plus there is a 'need' for another airfield in the home counties (in addition to Kenley) suitable for Air Cadet gliding if it is ever re-organised; I understand cadets from Herts and Bucks Wing have to go to Wethersfield in Essex at the moment.
Course I suppose Northolt might be a possibility, especially as there will be no powered fixed wing traffic there for much of this year
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