Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Aircrew Forums > Military Aviation
Reload this Page >

Hawker Hunter Crash at Shoreham Airshow

Military Aviation A forum for the professionals who fly military hardware. Also for the backroom boys and girls who support the flying and maintain the equipment, and without whom nothing would ever leave the ground. All armies, navies and air forces of the world equally welcome here.

Hawker Hunter Crash at Shoreham Airshow

Old 25th Aug 2015, 11:52
  #341 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: UK
Posts: 1,442
There's as much ill-informed speculation on here as there is in R & N. For the record, AH is a short haul captain and part-time so neither fatigue nor jet lag are likely causes. Furthermore, being part time meant he had plenty of opportunity to stay current and practised in display flying.
Megaton is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 11:54
  #342 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Tarn et Garonne, Southwest France
Posts: 5,283
Unsubstantiated speculation and misinformation:

It seems Mr Sharp thinks that the aircraft was put down on the A27 on purpose as he had lost power instead of going for the airfield.
Mr Sharp has no way of knowing about the condition of the engine nor Andy's intentions. The clip was heavily edited so his comments may have been misrepresented or he has made a complete fool of himself talking about stuff he doesn't understand.

Originally Posted by Captain Kirk
there is no obvious indication of an engine malfunction
I understand that's an observation, but there are plenty of failure modes that may not be obvious from a distance.

Originally Posted by Captain Kirk
As for waiting for the facts. A complete video of the accident sequence is available as well as a plethora of images - many an accident enquiry has been conducted in its entirety without any such material to draw upon. Yes, there will be other details to consider, but the basic physics of why this ac came into contact with the ground can be deduced by those with adequate experience.
Sorry, that is absolute hoop. An amateur video from a hand-held camera does not show a fraction of the detail about the state of the aircraft or the pilot or to assume parameters from which to draw any conclusions at all. It can form a part of the picture, but it will be the forensic evidence that will answer some of the important questions. The camera is roughly tracking the aircraft with few fixed points of reference for much of the footage for estimating pitch angles, pitch rate, altitude, angle of attack or aircraft speed - there are some. The video is useful to suggest that the wings are still attached, the aircraft did not appear to be on fire, etc, and it may be useful to confirm or discount possible factors later. But will only once the investigators have ALL THE FACTS they can reasonably establish.


Originally Posted by andrewn
explicitly I'm saying that many people on here can probably make a relatively informed judgement call as to the primary cause of incidents such as this one based on evidence presented and background knowledge and often this indicates "pilot error". In this particular case i am thinking it may not be as straightforward.
If by "evidence presented" you mean a video, then I would suggest there are insufficient data to go on. "Many people on here" have more sense than to make any form of judgement nor to print any such speculation here. Unfortunately, that is clearly not the case for everyone. You appear to have examined enough "evidence" to conclude that this case may not be straightforward. Well done.

Originally Posted by flying anorak
there is no sign of the gas tube I would expect to see had the ejection been initiated.
You would not see a "gas tube" unless the main ejection gun had fired. One can initiate ejection, but the seat will not fire if an interlock or failure interrupts the sequence. The lack of visible "gas tube" would not necessarily mean ejection had not been initiated.


Originally Posted by grimweasel
One photo quite clearly shows pilot slumped fwd in seat prior to impact. Could this be g lock where pilot blacked out? Do these older pilots still undergo strict medicals that allow for high G aerobatics? Same with Gnat in my opinion. Both crashed after performing high g manoeuvres. Look at Reds crash few years back. Same thing. Even happens to the medically fit pros.
It's called gloc, sometimes g-loc, and of course it will be a factor for the investigation, but It would be highly unlikely at the airspeeds used to fly a loop.

Pilots do have medicals, early fifties is hardly old, but as you say it can even happen to medically fit pros, so the question isn't worth asking unless you're trying to make a point. As for your speculation about the same factor causing three separate incidents, the less said the better. "Same thing"?

Originally Posted by stanwell (also commented by BEagle)
I'm surprised that Eric 'Winkle' Brown was reported as having opined that 'pilot-error' was a major contributor to the crash.
I'd thought he was a bit more astute than that.
Indeed. He should certainly know better. A stupid supposition with no basis in evidence. Leslie Hatcher's remarks are even more out of order. He should hang his head in shame.

Originally Posted by wingswinger
Using flap in the pull out is not only not necessary, it exposes the aircraft to the well-known Hunter flap-trap. His speed at the bottom of the manoeuvre would I guess have been in the order of 360-400kts, more than enough for the flap-trap to have seriously limited elevator authority.
If you're going to set yourself up as an expert, at least make statements that are true. To hit M0.9 at or near sea level he would have needed to have been doing around 540kts, well beyond your "guess". The use of flap in Hunter aerobatics has been standard and safe practice for decades and its effect well-understood at slower speeds. Now I'm going to speculate: you clearly missed something important during your 800 hrs on Hunters.

On a personal note, I wish Andy a successful recovery and I hope his family and friends are not unduly affected by some of the unnecessary speculation and I'll-informed comment here and in the media.
Courtney Mil is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 12:00
  #343 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Welwyn Garden City
Age: 59
Posts: 1,262
Quote:
It could well be a long list, but I fear the likes of Duxford and Farnborough are now going to have to have a long hard think about their display regulations.
A very long list, unfortunately. As a somewhat unscientific exercise I overlaid the position of the crash relative to the end of the runway (being unsure of the datum point for the display) over a number of regular airshow venues and in quite a few of them the impact was on a road or buildings. I strongly suspect that the 2016 airshow season will be much smaller than this year, and Duxford and Farnborough in particular will, as you say, be left with much thinking to do.
MTM,

So which airfields have you placed your - to scale - overlay onto in order to predict a much smaller number of airshows next year?

FB
Finningley Boy is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 12:03
  #344 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Outside the Fence
Age: 67
Posts: 333
Tiger Mate,

Thanks for trying to answer some of my questions.

You state that the following is always available to airshow organisers.
Display ribbon diagram. (display routine/ notes / pictorial diagram)
Is it not true that at some displays/airshows, pilots change or makeup their displays in real time?

IMHO the "read across" DA on different types is too liberal in this day and age.

You also state;
IMHO the regulation in place was sufficient. It will be difficult to undo yesterdays regulation and will cost the industry operators / owners business. A Meteor et al in horizontal flight will not justify cost in anyones budget.
You imply that the regulations should not be more rigorous because it will impact on the pockets of operators/owners. I would answer that it is imperative that displaying jets at airshows in the UK is not seen as the domain of a select few rich/connected pilots who are allowed to self regulate to a great extent!
Dominator2 is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 13:00
  #345 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Quite near 'An aerodrome somewhere in England'
Posts: 25,671
jindabyne wrote:

Wings,
Even one notch of flap could produce a significant nose-down trim change at the speed at which it would have been flying.
True, but that's not what R4H was rightly describing. With 23 degrees flap selected throughout the manoeuvre in question, there would be no 'significant' nose down trim change.
An admirable concise post from a very experienced Hunter pilot and QFI

If I recall correctly, use of 23 flap in ACM caused an initial nose-down trim change, which in the environment of dynamic ACM was easily overcome by a firm elevator movement. The effect of 23 flap gave an increased turn rate, which was advantageous in getting to a sight-on solution, but the increased drag meant that it was only a temporary advantage?

Whereas flying certain manoeuvres with 23 flap was entirely normal for formation aerobatic teams.
BEagle is online now  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 13:30
  #346 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: UK
Posts: 134
Likewise there is a JP3 display pilot in the UK, with 500 hrs on jets, who also claims to have displayed the Hunter T7, again on a PPL, medical unknown. I'm not sure if this was the pilot involved in the Southport/Blackpool JP near accident?
You refer to Neil McCarthy, obviously. Probably a class 2 medical one would assume. Then again, you know what they say about assumptions... I don't believe it was him that was involved in the Blackpool incident. As far as I know, he only ever positioned the Hunter to displays and Chris or Andy did the poling in the shows.

I don't see an issue with PPl's or class 2 medical holders displaying aircraft. I was happy enough to watch Bob Hoover display on an FAA class 3 medical. There are numerous extremely competent DA holders that 'only' have a Private Pilot's Licence. There are numerous ATPL's displaying aircraft with less time in the seat doing aero's than the PPL pilots.

This aircraft was a stablemate of the Gnat at North Weald sadly.

http://www.caa.co.uk/docs/33/SD2015003.pdf

Last edited by Hawker 800; 25th Aug 2015 at 13:45.
Hawker 800 is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 13:47
  #347 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 654
Tiger Mate,

Not quite correct on DAs and currency. To display you need to have flown 3 displays or practices in the previous 90 days, one of which must have been on type. All of the single engine jets are category G and a DA is needed for each type and is named on the DA paperwork. Therefore, you cannot display a Hunter on a JP DA.

Last edited by LOMCEVAK; 25th Aug 2015 at 15:33.
LOMCEVAK is online now  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 13:47
  #348 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Lincs
Posts: 203
Courtney - I didn't say that the video presented all of the facts but it certainly reveals enough to determine the basics; indeed, you very helpfully list most of them, but actually not all. Some things cannot be discounted and any additional evidence is always helpful. However, it is often the case that ALL of the facts are never determined beyond question - and reasonable judgement upon the most likely sequence of events is made by people with relevant experience. Some members of these forums have that experience - most do not. Some of the comments on here are misleading and unhelpful - and unprofessional - but then this is a largely unregulated forum of, mostly, amateurs. So I recommend that you stop attempting to be the arbiter of accident investigation procedures or to police the internet. Have you actually been a part of an accident investigation? Incidentally, I also acknowledged that some engine failures are not obvious, so please do not attempt to score a point with a selective quote.

Trust me when I say that there is enough evidence (and it is evidence) to discount many of the wild (deliberate attempt to land) and not-so-wild (g-loc) theories circulating and to narrow the LIKELY cause, notwithstanding contributory factors which are always harder to determine. What the video does NOT show is valuable too but I'm not going to spell that out for you.

The indisputable fact of this accident is that AH (whom I know and respect) ran out of height. How and why will form the basis of the investigation.

I know your motives are good Courtney and that you generally post good sense, but your protestations in this instance are not (wholly) justified. Having complete tosh spouted by that clown on the BBC is downright irritating of course, but given the inevitable scrutiny that an accident of this nature will attract, neither is it appropriate to try and draw a cloak of secrecy across the event, as we were once inclined to. Indeed, some early, measured and informed comments to the media might have spared us the 'he was going too fast and had to put it down on the A27' nonsense! I'm not attributing blame - and neither will the AAIB incidentally - I have just discussed some of the more obvious features of this accident - features which may be seen in a different context after a full investigation but which will not themselves change. This is, after all, a forum for discussing aviation related issues...

Last edited by Captain Kirk; 25th Aug 2015 at 14:22.
Captain Kirk is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 13:52
  #349 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Essex
Posts: 353
Likewise, should display pilots be required to hold or have held a professional pilots qualification (ATPL/RAF wings).
Couldn't that mean someone had spent some time flying transport aircraft, which wouldn't be any qualification to display a historic jet fighter?

P
Phil_R is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 14:02
  #350 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: UK
Posts: 175
Likewise, should display pilots be required to hold or have held a professional pilots qualification (ATPL/RAF wings)
Couldn't that mean someone had spent some time flying transport aircraft, which wouldn't be any qualification to display a historic jet fighter?
Agreed, Phil.

As well as qualifications on paper, there is the issue of currency. How is currency maintained in the civilian world flying similar, ex-military aircraft?*

*I am in no way doubting the experience, the currency or the credentials of the pilot in question.
JointShiteFighter is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 14:09
  #351 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: South of the ex-North Devon flying club. North of Isca.
Age: 45
Posts: 155
Indeed, what makes a multi thousand hour tourist tube operator any more qualified than a standard weekend flying PPL holder to fly an ex-mil fast jet?

Nothing. Neither is trained or current or has experience relevant to the type.

Maintaining currency isn't a problem, as long as you have the currency (£1500-2500 p/h by a bit of trawling for operating costs of various vintage jets).
Fluffy Bunny is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 14:25
  #352 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Tarn et Garonne, Southwest France
Posts: 5,283
Indeed, Basil!

Captain Kirk,

Your subtle change of direction there makes all the difference.

Originally Posted by Captain Kirk
but the basic physics of why this ac came into contact with the ground can be deduced by those with adequate experience.
Originally Posted by Captain Kirk
there is enough evidence (and it is evidence) to discount many of the wild (deliberate attempt to land) and not-so-wild (g-loc) theories circulating and to narrow the LIKELY cause, notwithstanding contributory factors which are always harder to determine
It is your initial claim that the cause of the accident can be deduced from the video that I totally disagree with. Your new statement that the video can (help to - my inserted words) discount causes is much more reasonable. And it is because the video alone is insufficient to determine the cause (rather than help to discount them) that we must wait for all the facts. "As for all the facts" in your words.

Have you actually been a part of an accident investigation?
One accident investigation and one incident BoI as President. In the latter case I spent weeks exploring the limits of extracting evidence from photographic material; that evidence was amazingly fruitful, but eventually only served to point me in the direction of the hard evidence.

Edit to add: I agree about "Indeed, some early, measured and informed comments to the media might have spared us the 'he was going too fast and had to put it down on the A27' nonsense!". Someone involved with the show or those investigating it making an official statement may have helped to put some balance into the whole thing. I doubt there could have been many solid answers, but at least a stated position and an explanation of how the recovery and investigation would go forward. Sadly, I suspect the press would still have gone after the "experts" for something more sensational.

Last edited by Courtney Mil; 25th Aug 2015 at 14:55.
Courtney Mil is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 14:36
  #353 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: FL, USA
Posts: 357
Totally correct, Phil and Bunny. 20k-plus hours in airliners has left me with ZERO recent experience in aeros and I wouldn't dream of attempting even a ferry flight in a pointy thing these days. Last aeros I flew were wobbly indeed in a Yak 15 years ago….not sure I could remember how to even strap into a MB seat. And then there's my meal-tray honed physique…and I have a class 1 med.

I have participated in an accident investigation, and the info obtained from film is amazing, particularly if the characteristics of the cameras used are known. Heat signature, energy levels, control deflections etc are all possible. If there is no recorder aboard or radar ground recording, film is IT. In this case, I believe a professional company was recording the display, and their recording in HD will no doubt be available to the AIB.

Godwilling, a recovery of AH will be a blessing in many ways, also.
RRAAMJET is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 14:44
  #354 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: UK
Age: 64
Posts: 515
Sad and tragic accident.

Haven't read through the previous pages in the thread, but hopefully the pilot will pull through and be able to assist AAIB with their investigation.
Trogger is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 14:53
  #355 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Next to Ross and Demelza
Age: 49
Posts: 1,011
MTM,

So which airfields have you placed your - to scale - overlay onto in order to predict a much smaller number of airshows next year?

FB
Hey, I said it was unscientific, but so far it includes Duxford (M11 -no surprise really), Culdrose (row of houses next to the viewing enclosure at one end, A394 at the other), Cosford (the railway station) and Waddington (A15) amongst others. At Farnborough it is well within the airfield perimeter, and at Dunsfold it is open countryside.

But if I have done it, you can be sure that somebody in an insurance office is doing the same, with as little science as I used, and will be using it as a reason to bump up air display premiums by two or three hundred percent for next year.
Martin the Martian is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 15:07
  #356 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Agion Oros
Posts: 157
To clarify, I think that ideally the 1500 hrs needs to be fast jet or mix of fast jet/rotary as a test pilot.

But previous fast jet experience is degraded with time, possibly. As previously mentioned, the L29 accident, was many years after the pilot had left the Red arrows. There is no easy answer to experience or currency.

I think the CAA are going to have to take a holistic approach to all this!

Finally as to SEP display aircraft, such as Spitfires, Hurricanes, etc., the CAA might want to adopt the very sensible rules set down by the RAF and BBMF in terms of currency.
athonite is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 15:14
  #357 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: In front of a computer
Posts: 1,950
Help in understanding what happened here may come from this operation.

PlanesTV Live | PlanesTV

The Shoreham airshow was professionally filmed and streamed live on the web - I would imagine the footage is already available to the AAIB
ETOPS is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 15:16
  #358 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Darlington
Posts: 36
I really hope that AH comes through this and recovers but would question whether he will be able to help the AAIB in any meaningful way.

My CFI had a serious accident the year after he taught me to fly and was in intensive care for a week. When he came to he couldn't remember a thing about what happened.
Monsun is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 15:30
  #359 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: South of the ex-North Devon flying club. North of Isca.
Age: 45
Posts: 155
ETOPS & RAAMJET. The footage from planes TV is indeed in full 1080p and was very detailed from the crowdline, with the aircraft almost full frame and in good focus. Thankfully, it and the many "pirate" copies have been pulled from the internet.
Fluffy Bunny is offline  
Old 25th Aug 2015, 15:32
  #360 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Tarn et Garonne, Southwest France
Posts: 5,283
Good post, ETOPS. And it does raise a point I touched on earlier. Not only are these cameras very high quality (as well as high def), they are also on tripods. That takes out a lot of the variables from hand-held. Footage from a level, known point of reference provides a datum from which to do meaningful analysis of the display. Allied with forensic physical evidenence and statements, their footage will be able to help with investigation.

PlanesTV may well lose their original footage for a while, backups are a must.
Courtney Mil is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.