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Martin Baker to be prosecuted over death of Flt Lt. Sean Cunningham

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Martin Baker to be prosecuted over death of Flt Lt. Sean Cunningham

Old 19th Feb 2018, 06:35
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WHBM

(eg the Min of Justice appointing/promoting judges, and another Ministry being part of the story)

Very true. The recent chair of the Defence Select Committee was appointed as a Justice Minister last month. In both capacities he was fully aware of the evidence that could have cleared M-B.
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 11:23
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As matters stand, the root causes have been swept under the carpet, again.
I understand that in the Tornado case (collision over the Moray Firth on 3dr July 2012) the root cause was avoided. The SI panel were advised by the MilAAIB to make the cause as bland and generic as possible, which in turn led to DG MAA (Air Marshal Garwood) attributing a fair amount of bad luck to the accident.

It is probably worth pointing out that the Tornado SI was taking place at the same time as the Hawk SI; same MilAAIB "specialist" advise/direcrtive.

DV
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 12:09
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Being pedantic, I think the military air accident agency has been rebranded as

The Defence Safety Authority
Which defines its role as

(A)n independent organisation, empowered by charter from SofS to undertake the roles of regulator, accident investigation and Defence Authority for safety.
The DSA was formed on 1 April 2015 and draws its authority from a charter signed by the Secretary of State (SofS). It has 3 roles:

firstly, it regulates safety across defence in terms of aviation, nuclear, maritime, land, ordnance and explosives, and fire
secondly, it is responsible for investigating defence accidents
thirdly, it is the Defence Authority for safety (including health and environmental protection)
https://www.gov.uk/government/organi...fety-authority

https://www.gov.uk/government/organi...uthority/about
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 14:38
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DSA? Missed that. What is the average staff tour length these days so I can be prepared for the next change. 😉
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 16:02
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roving:-

Being pedantic, I think the military air accident agency has been rebranded as
The Defence Safety Authority
Which defines its role as
(A)n independent organisation, empowered by charter from SofS to undertake the roles of regulator, accident investigation and Defence Authority for safety.
I admire your sardonic sense of humour, roving. Apart from the fact that it confirms that Regulator and Investigator are one and the same (very convenient for the Regulator of course), it is part of the MOD. So independent of who exactly, the tea lady?
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 18:06
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Originally Posted by Chugalug2


I admire your sardonic sense of humour, roving. Apart from the fact that it confirms that Regulator and Investigator are one and the same (very convenient for the Regulator of course), it is part of the MOD. So independent of who exactly, the tea lady?
I think we may have to wait a long time for it to blame itself
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 18:37
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Well exactly, roving. Unfortunately for its scapegoats, a law unto itself.
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 19:40
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roving and Chug

Being a tad more pedantic, it seems to be even more complicated than you might think. The MAA (Military Aviation Authority) has been subsumed (Yes, Minister) into the new-ish DSA (Defence Safety Authority). But what used to be the MilAAIB (Military Air Accidents Investigations Branch), which was part of MAA, is now a separate team called Defence AIB (Defence Accident Investigation Branch). It's colocated with the (civil) AAIB (Air Accident Investigation Branch), but I seem to remember that it has a "figurehead director", or some such bollox, in the DG DSA. I can't find the reference to that now....

Hope that's clear. Questions? (My head hurts.)

airsound
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Old 19th Feb 2018, 20:22
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Hot off the press as ever Airsound! I hope that the MOD sign-writer is well ahead of Google, which ascribes DAIB to something Chemical in German (not a very encouraging combination). Nonetheless, ASEMS Online (no, I don't know either) ascribes DAiB (very important the use of case in acronyms, of course) to the DSA, implying that it stands for Defence Safety Authority Accident Investigation Branch (but not explicitly of course).

No matter where it lives, no matter who it is collated with, if it quacks like a duck, it's a duck! The "figurehead" director is in the DSA, the DSA is in the MOD, thus the DAiB is part of the MOD. The goalposts must be getting pretty worn by now, don't you think?

https://www.asems.mod.uk/acronyms/daib
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 00:32
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Back to Martin-Baker

Back to Martin-Baker ? Quote ……. "Unfortunately for its scapegoats …."

The Martin-Baker annual report (signed by the Company Secretary) dated Nov 7th 2017 and date-stamped 7th December stated –
“On the evidence presented by the Prosecution as at 11 October 2017, it is the legal opinion of both Clyde & Co and Defence Counsel that there is a realistic prospect of the Company successfully defending itself at trial and that it is probable i.e. more likely than not, that the Company will be successful at trial. The trial is listed for 5 weeks at Lincoln Crown Court commencing on 21 (sic) January 2018. A not guilty plea has been entered and the matter is being fully prepared for trial.”

So what happened between filing the company report in November and mid January,
to cause John Martin to change the plea to guilty ? I presume he didn’t just decide on a whim at breakfast on the 22nd Jan.

There would have been board meetings, meetings with Clyde & Co and Defence Counsel, who had told the board in October/November “… that it is probable ….. that the Company will be successful at trial.” Were there disagreements or were the ‘new facts’ sufficient to convince them all, against all the ‘old facts’ that have been well rehearsed on PPRune and elsewhere.

The Company Secretary was replaced a week before the trial, on January 15th 2018 but that might have been co-incidental because he’s still Secretary of the controlling parent company Killinchy Aerospace (formerly M-B Engineering).

However, Killinchy own all the shares of M-B Aircraft, including all voting rights and power to appoint and dismiss directors. Ten directors – the five of M-B, plus five others, own most of the shares in Killinchy. So was this a decision made (or nudged) by the controlling company ? Or was there improper pressure from elsewhere ? Or even a ‘guarantee’ of tenure at Chalgrove perhaps ?

What about the other four M-B Directors ? M-B Senior management ? What about the eight hundred or so M-B staff ? I wonder how they feel ?

Will there be scapegoats within the Company or is this to be recorded for posterity as a guiltless corporate crime with only the Company’s good name (and no other organisation or individuals) to bear the blame – and pay the price ?

Anyone have any ideas ?

LFH

..............

Last edited by Lordflasheart; 20th Feb 2018 at 06:57.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 00:58
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Originally Posted by Chugalug2
No matter where it lives, no matter who it is collated with, if it quacks like a duck, it's a duck! The "figurehead" director is in the DSA, the DSA is in the MOD, thus the DAiB is part of the MOD. [/url]
We have been round this buoy before. By your logic, the CAA and the AAIB both work for DfT so the AAIB can't be independent of the regulator and must be corrupt (and all without a VSO in sight). Head DAiB has a direct line of accountability to SofS MOD, as does the Chief Inspector of Air Accidents to his SofS. It has to come to a point somewhere, so even if you put the DAiB in the Treasury, the PM is still in charge.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 07:35
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Fortissimo

The CAA and AAIB haven't lied in official reports, to bereaved families, Coroners or other legal authorities. MoD/MAA has, to protect itself. It has lied to Ministers, who (for the most part inadvertently) repeated them and misled parliament. The MAA doesn't even know why it was formed (MAA Technical Director, 13 July 2014). Or if it does, he lied. A common denominator emerges. With plenty of VSOs in sight.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 08:18
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Fortissimo, tuc has replied on my behalf and better than I could. I would only add to his point re MOD's "previous". When I was serving, much was made within the RAF of the "independence" of the RAF Flight Safety System of the CoC. The Inspector of Flight Safety himself later discovered the hollowness of that claim when his various "Arts" were disappeared by certain RAF VSOs. The MOD, and in particular certain RAF VSOs, has form in subverting UK Military Air Safety. Only by making Military Air Regulation and Investigation truly independent of the MOD and of each other can the weary journey of retrieving UK Military Airworthiness be started out upon.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 15:22
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Originally Posted by Chugalug2
Only by making Military Air Regulation and Investigation truly independent of the MOD and of each other can the weary journey of retrieving UK Military Airworthiness be started out upon.

How? Would you be happy for entirely non-mil pilots and engineers to be investigating the military?
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 15:42
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The CAA and AAIB haven't lied in official reports, to bereaved families, Coroners or other legal authorities.
That's a rather sweeping statement, don't you think? There are documented cases of aviation authorities in other parts of the planet "fudging" (for want of a better word) accident reports...I say old fellow, are we immune to this behaviour simply because we are British???

Come to think of it, don't us Brits and Germans still legally disagree over the cause of a certain well-known aviation accident at Munich??

Apart from the fact there is no way on Earth you can know whether or not your sweeping statement is true, Fortissmo raised an objective point of logic, and you answered it with a (highly disputable) subjective empirical statement. Frankly, that's academically woeful.

Fortissimo, tuc has replied on my behalf and better than I could.
Blimey, you must hold yourself to extremely low standards of debate.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 15:56
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TOFO

OK. 'To my knowledge, in UK military deaths'. Satisfied? In fact, it is the AAIB who have consistently told the truth.

MoD lied. Fact. Named and published, and passed MoD scrutiny and clearance. Still waiting for a complaint or challenge.

Raise your standards and publish yourself.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 18:03
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The former Station C.O. of RAF Kuala Lumpur in the late 1960's when chairing a UK/US Military Symposium on the role of the Royal Air Force in the Malaysian Emergency, said in terms, that it was always assumed that the not infrequent crashes of Valettas over the jungle killing all on board were as a result of pilot error until three air loaders survived a crash and described how the pilot had told them to strap themselves into their seats and brace. Subsequent detailed examination of one of the engines revealed it had oversped.

Makes one wonder what proportion of the very many fatal crashes of Royal Air Force aircraft in the 1950's and 1960's were wrongly blamed on pilot error.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 18:43
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ATG:-
How? Would you be happy for entirely non-mil pilots and engineers to be investigating the military?
No, I wouldn't. Nobody has suggested that an independent Investigator (or Regulator come to that) should be entirely non-military). It was not JOs or SOs that perpetrated this mess, it was RAF VSOs who subverted the Air Safety System, and RAF VSOs who have covered it up since. Of course military and civilian personnel would be involved in both functions, but they would be led by civilians outwith the MOD.

Now I'm sure that there are many holes to pick in that and the final form needs crafting by somebody knowledgeable and respected enough to be accepted by all. He'll have an impossible job, but it won't be because of the likes of me or others who fight for military airworthiness reform, but because of the hubris of a leadership that brings shame on a Service that should be instead solely concerned with celebrating its centenary.
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 18:51
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TOFO, the ball boy! Play the bloody ball! Your diatribe is an example of the standard of debate that you call for?

In every airworthiness related fatal accident thread on this forum, when the language got personal we knew we were getting somewhere. So what is about to be unearthed now I wonder?
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Old 20th Feb 2018, 19:31
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There is a simple solution to ensuring that these fatal accident reports bear scrutiny.

The SoS asks the Lord Chancellor to appoint a panel of recently retired (they retire at 70) High Court Judges to Chair the BOI. He sits with military assessors and has power to call evidence from any quarter. To ensure that the evidence of witnesses is properly presented and examined, from a panel of suitably experienced Counsel, one is appointed to assist the Board. A full transcript of the evidence is taken.

If VSOs wish to contribute to the inquiry they appear before the Board to set-out their case.

Once the report is signed off by the chairman, it cannot be added to or subtracted from.
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