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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 20th Apr 2018, 19:20
  #621 (permalink)  
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if this amounted to something beginning with P?
Any sympathy felt for MB must be reconciled with the effect that their pleading guilty had on efforts to reform the mess that is UK Military Air Safety. If they had not taken the hit but instead fought the charge then perhaps more lives might have been saved in the long run, in addition to those saved by their excellent products.

I now feel little sympathy as a result of that supine act. As to the 'P' word, as it said in the Nationwide ad, I think we'll find that it doesn't work like that.
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Old 21st Apr 2018, 00:01
  #622 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Wander00 View Post
Hopefully M-B will take the escape offered and tickets for the retrial sold through the usual agencies
Not a chance.
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Old 21st Apr 2018, 11:31
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tucumseh, I was being cautious in case any legal eagles are watching.....

Chugalug....I suspect you may be right.
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Old 21st Apr 2018, 13:05
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Treble one

Thanks. The move by HSE's legal department is, in my opinion, the first sign of any legal entity doing their job properly. Too late I suspect.

Perjury? Not relating to the video. More a case of loss of corporate memory. But an indictment of the so-called investigation, especially as the Service Inquiry admitted MoD had stopped training groundcrew correctly. But elsewhere? How fine is the line between perjury and lying by omission? 'I promise to tell the whole truth....'

Well said Chug.
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Old 21st Apr 2018, 13:55
  #625 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by tucumseh View Post
But elsewhere? How fine is the line between perjury and lying by omission? 'I promise to tell the whole truth....'

Well said Chug.
Nail hit fairly and squarely there.
Back in the day, newly recruited Constables were taught about their primary duty: That of detection and apprehension of offenders. They were taught that it was their duty to present ALL the evidence before the Court and enable the Court to make an informed judgement. It was impressed on the newbies that Presenting ALL the evidence was fundamental to the justice process. Evidence was defined as "anything material that tends to prove or disprove the case and it is the duty of the Police to bring ALL the evidence before the Court".
Sadly, it seems that truth (the whole truth) is sacrificed all too often and without it, there is no justice.
To deliberately withhold evidence material to the case and thus influence the outcome is a clear contempt and may also fit the definition of perjury, with potential overlap, depending on the individual case.
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Old 5th Jun 2018, 18:22
  #626 (permalink)  
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Meanwhile, back at Chalgrove airfield, it's development into 3000 houses appears to be stalling......

Lack of funds could put an end to Chalgrove Airfield plans | Oxford Mail
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Old 5th Jun 2018, 18:40
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Very interesting OMS....
Last week the Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner directed the Chief Constable to investigate possible failure to disclose evidence. The Health and Safety Executive states it has not seen this evidence; slightly embarrassing given it wrote to the judge before sentencing telling her it was 'irrelevant'. She proceeded on that basis.
HSE has also complained to a potential witness (had the case been heard in court) that he did not submit other, related evidence. Embarrassingly, the witness has produced the HSE's acknowledgement of receipt.
What a tangled web...
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Old 6th Jun 2018, 07:14
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OMS, your link takes us further down the road hinted at by your previous one at #618, and MBL appears likely to remain at Chalgrove. The withholding of evidence has resulted lately in the release of many from prison who were thus improperly convicted. Some can fess up to systemic failure it seems, but not so UK Military Air Safety unfortunately.

This thread is about the avoidable and tragic death of Sean Cunningham. The system that should have prevented his death instead ensured it and cries out for total reform. Instead we have the farrago outlined by tuc above.

MBL will remain at Chalgrove, the MAA will continue to deny the truth, and the VSOs responsible for the broken state of UK Military Air Safety will continue to be protected. Or at least that appears to be the de facto policy of the RAF High Command...
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Old 6th Jun 2018, 07:17
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Chug, are we not yet at a point where we can evidence that an offence has been committed, and therefore should be reported to the Police?
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Old 6th Jun 2018, 07:28
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airpolice, it depends which offence you mean. Certainly the illegal order given by an RAF VSO to suborn the UK Military Airworthiness Regulations was reported to the Thames Valley Police. Their Deputy Chief Constable said that it had nothing to do with them, or words to that effect. The RAF Provost Marshal didn't even bother to reply...
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Old 7th Jun 2018, 08:14
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In the Thames Valley Police case referred to by Chug (Nimrod XV230), the DCC claimed they could not proceed as there was 'little chance of witnesses coming forward'. She was sitting on witness statements, and replying to the letter that had submitted them. Not unlike what I describe above, but this time it is the HSE's principal investigator.

Airpolice, a complaint has been made, in May 2017. That is part of what the P&CC has instructed the CC to address. From other threads you will glean there is far more to this. Formal complaints have been made in a number of cases. Most police forces have not replied. Some just pass the buck. For example, Police Scotland (and Strathclyde Police before) acknowledge offences were committed by MoD/RAF on Chinook ZD576, but say it is for the Metropolitan Police to investigate as they were committed in London. The Met simply don't reply. Too busy tax collecting.
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Old 26th Jun 2018, 05:21
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The Health and safety Executive has claimed to both police and judge that the Mk10B parachute release mechanism (scissor/drogue shackle arrangement) is unique to the Mk10B seat in Hawk, therefore witness evidence that both aircrew and groundcrew/maintainers where taught from 1952 how it works, and how to maintain it so that the assembly can disengage, is 'irrelevant'. The fact there is a 107 minute RAF training video, and umpteen servicing schedules from various users, disproving this HSE claim was also deemed 'irrelevant'. Lincs Police Chief Constable has accepted HSE's claim without checking facts. Those on PPRuNe who have actually seen a seat may have a view on this....

Quite why Martin-Baker continue to put up with this is anyone's guess, but oldmansquipper may very well be right. However, the company has now reacted and called forward witness evidence that the HSE claimed to the judge was irrelevant (that word again), despite never having actually spoken to the witnesses or taken evidence. That the HSE has misled the judiciary and police is now the subject of a formal complaint, so that is perhaps a good place to stop....

Someone should write a book.
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Old 26th Jun 2018, 20:21
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Not too sure about how a book might be filled out sufficiently but a short (comedic flight safety) film might be more suitable.
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Old 26th Jun 2018, 21:03
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Rigga, I suspect that tuc had tongue very much in cheek when he wrote
Someone should write a book.
In the Foreword to the book* which has been written, Tony Cable says it "will fascinate and anger you in equal measure". I am afraid that there is little room for humour.
* "Breaking of the Military Covenant" by David Hill. Proceeds to Help for Heroes I'm sure that a PM to tucumseh would provide more details of how to purchase it.
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Old 26th Jun 2018, 21:28
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Slight correction to that title, Pulse - it's 'Breaking the Military Covenant - Who Speaks for the Dead?'

Not sure if this is allowed, but I'll try, bearing in mind that the book is not for profit

Watch this space

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Old 26th Jun 2018, 22:28
  #636 (permalink)  
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Many here will be familiar with the MB series of ejector seats, even those as ancient as me. We all know that the scissor drogue shackle arrangement that tuc speaks of was common to all Marks from the Mk2 until the Mk10 in the Tornado (but not in the Hawk) introduced a different arrangement. Thus the MOD (and indeed the Air Ministry before it) was fully familiar with it, and RAF training has taught aircrew and ground engineers alike from the very first. For HSE to claim that the Mk10B drogue shackle arrangement in the Hawk was unique is bizarre. To further claim that evidence to the contrary in the form of a 1950's training video (from the original film) showing that very same arrangement and the sequence to be followed by servicing personnel is 'irrelevant' goes beyond bizarre and enters the dark world of MOD style tactics.

Sean Cunningham deserves better than this, we deserve better than this. The British Establishment seems to place its trust in sticking close to nurse for fear of finding something worse. It needs to know that nurse in this case is a killer and would do best to disown her and bring her to book before she kills yet more.

The book tuc mentions has indeed already been written, as disclosed by pulse1 and airsound. It is required reading for all who care about air safety, particularly UK Military Air Safety, which is in dire need of reform. At the moment it is a dysfunctional and broken system.

Last edited by Chugalug2; 27th Jun 2018 at 06:39.
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Old 25th Jun 2021, 21:54
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Well, here we are three years later (-1Hr) and in addition to the excellent book mentioned above by airsound is this one, again by David Hill :-

RED 5: An investigation into the death of Flight Lieutenant Sean Cunningham: Amazon.co.uk: Hill, David: 9781706149231: Books RED 5: An investigation into the death of Flight Lieutenant Sean Cunningham: Amazon.co.uk: Hill, David: 9781706149231: Books

now in its 4th revision (June 2021) and available in Kindle form for a mere 2.99, as well as a paperback edition, another bargain at 6.99. As ever, all proceeds go to charity. David Hill adds this important revision to his other three books; Their Greatest Disgrace, Breaking The Military Covenant, and The Inconvenient Truth. No-one now can offer the excuse we were never told about that. We have been now, and as aviators it concerns us all....

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Old 28th Jun 2021, 21:38
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Red 5 - Got it today and must admit I am seriously impressed with the book and David Hill the author. Well researched and despite the various and somewhat complex technical issues involved it is presented in such a way that makes the facts jump off the page. Extremely well done David.

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Old 29th Jun 2021, 18:51
  #639 (permalink)  
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An excellent book. Several ‘agencies’ should hang their heads in shame….(IMHO)

Is David still considered Mr Vexatious and on the Whitehall naughty step? Perhaps Tecumseh would know.
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Old 29th Jun 2021, 20:18
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Originally Posted by langleybaston View Post
Am I alone in being a little uneasy about this prosecution? Very difficult to put into words.

Here we have a magnificent world leading British company of undoubted excellence to go through the wringer. As I read the BBC, this is not manslaughter or criminal negligence. We are not talking about a dodgy operation running fun-fair rides, or operating unsafe ferries.

I suppose the most favourable outcome now would be for the fine detail of the problem/ cause to be understood and acted on [although we would hope that was done days after the tragedy], and that any fine was transferred without delay to the victim's family. Any senior employee seen to be negligent should be dealt with appropriately.

Please don't shoot the messenger, I have never sat in a bang seat, but I do grow weary of this liitigious society where every accident has a blame to be attached.
I have sat in bang seats, and share your unease, LB.
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