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Weston-on-the-Green Fatality

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Weston-on-the-Green Fatality

Old 5th Sep 2021, 20:35
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Weston-on-the-Green Fatality

An RAF parachuting instructor has been killed at RAF Weston-on-the Green. Chute failed to open. RIP


https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...iled-open.html
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Old 5th Sep 2021, 21:04
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RIP mate, and my sincere condolences to the family and friends.
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Old 5th Sep 2021, 22:41
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Very sad news, those guys and gals are pros
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Old 6th Sep 2021, 10:57
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Definitely very sad, the attached article from Daily Mail mentions that jumpers sometime rely on their AAD to inform them when it’s time to deploy their chute. That’s nonsense no jumper relies on their AAD they rely on their altimeter and their ability to pull at the correct altitude for their experience level. The AAD is a back up device which will activate at pre determined altitude in the event that the jumper passes that altitude still descending at a certain speed, for example if the jumper has been knocked unconscious and cannot deploy or in the in rare circumstances if they lose altitude awareness. Ive witnessed a few cypress saves ( one of the devices used ) and they are quite dramatic. Clearly its not known why the device failed to activate in this case. Tragic ....Blue skies.
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Old 13th Sep 2021, 17:48
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I did the short course at Abingdon in 1967 and so feel qualified to admire the skill and courage of PJI's. I remember there was a case in 1965, I think, that a PJI remained in a clearly doomed Hastings throwing jumpers out of the door all the way to the ground. He died. My pal Alan Canham was one of the dead
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Old 14th Sep 2021, 13:14
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Ref Post No 5:

I was serving with 24 Sqn at Colerne when this accident happened to a 36 Sqn a/c from the same base.

I do not recall hearing of a PJI throwing jumpers out of the door all the way to the ground. It would certainly have made the headlines, had it happened, as the accident was all over the news at the time.

In my opinion, there was insufficient warning of the event for the crew to initiate abandonment of the aircraft. The failure of the elevator bolts was so sudden and the severe gyrations of the aircraft, completely out of control, would have made it impossible to move to the para door and jump, let alone organise such an event.

From Wikipedia:
The Hastings took off from Abingdon about 1600 hrs. One eyewitness reported it flying in company with two RAF Armstrong Whitworth AW.660 Argosy heavy transport aircraft. Eyewitnesses in the village of Berinsfieldreported seeing it fly over, then lose height or dive. They reported the aircraft "weaving from side to side", "its wings wiggled" or "its tail wobbled" before the Hastings climbed steeply out of control. It then fell with all four engines still running and crashed into a field at Little Baldon called Hundred Acres,[3][4] about 4+1⁄2 miles (7 km) east of Abingdon and 6 miles (10 km) southeast of Oxford. The aircraft hit the ground on its back and burst into a ball of flame,[3] killing all six crew and all 35 passengers. It was reported from RAF Abingdon that the pilot, Flight Lieutenant John Akin, had radioed that his aircraft was having control trouble[5] before the radio went dead.[4]

Last edited by DeanoP; 14th Sep 2021 at 13:26. Reason: Spelling
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Old 14th Sep 2021, 17:23
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RIP Sgt Rachel Fisk

Sergeant Rachel Fisk - Tribute | Royal Air Force (mod.uk)
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Old 14th Sep 2021, 18:06
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Are accident reports published for these type of events?

RIP Lass, you chanced to live like few know.
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Old 15th Sep 2021, 09:01
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Originally Posted by megan View Post
Are accident reports published for these type of events?

RIP Lass, you chanced to live like few know.
Yes, there will be a Service Inquiry and they are in the public domain. In fact, I was reading one recently about a parachuting accident (airborne collision).
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Old 15th Sep 2021, 20:26
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Slight thread drift, but I was stationed at at RAF Abingdon in 1959 and took this photo of a Hastings landing back at Abingdon after a drop at the nearby Weston-on-the-Green drop zone.
Parachute door left open as Weston is about 10-miles up the road from Abingdon just north of Oxford.
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Old 16th Sep 2021, 11:49
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Warmtoast,
we usually left the para doors off after dropping as the were pigs to refit and there was always the chance of losing one.
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Old 16th Sep 2021, 14:42
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AA62
Thanks for the info re. Hastings doors, don't know how the Abingdon based Beverleys managed with theirs, but don't recollect Beverleys landing with rear side doors open.


Beverley landing at Abingdon 1959

Last edited by Warmtoast; 16th Sep 2021 at 20:33.
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Old 16th Sep 2021, 15:30
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IIRC they would take the doors off. They did in Borneo.
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Old 17th Sep 2021, 09:42
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Opening and closing doors for para work would (in my time) be frowned on. Door, and (on the Bev) hatch surrounds, were carefully checked before flight for slightest damage (possibly apocryphal story of Gus Appleyard and the Bev boom hatch).Sticking one's head into the slipstream on the rtb gave a marvellous head massage ! Removing the clamshell doors on the Bev (for combined heavy drop and para, required the fitting of 'elephant ears' - otherwise boom departures would end up back in the freight bay !!
A remarlable tale of PJI actions was of Robbie R - No 1 despatcher on a Hastings drop. The No1 stood centrally at the rear of the aircraft and was the final monitoring check for the despatch process. He saw one of the stick with his static line not hooked on and grabbed the line, braced across the door and the 'chute deployed. (Final tie cord breaking strain was approx. 700pounds.!) Note that we dropped without reserve 'chutes.
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