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Helicopter engineer cleared of manslaughter after crash

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Helicopter engineer cleared of manslaughter after crash

Old 27th Mar 2002, 17:23
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Post Helicopter engineer cleared of manslaughter after crash

from Ananova News . . </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">Helicopter engineer cleared of manslaughter after crash . .. .An aircraft engineer has been cleared of three charges of manslaughter after a helicopter crashed to the ground killing everyone on board.. .. .Paul Kenward, 47, from Biggin Hill, Kent, was cleared at Oxford Crown Court after the accident involving a Hughes 269C helicopter. . .. .The aircraft plummeted to the ground on March 8, 2000, at Twyford, Berkshire, when the tail boom broke away and became entangled in the rotor blades.. .. .Kenward had ignored manufacturers' instructions to replace a cracked part which supported the tail boom and had it welded instead.. .. .Brendan Loft, 38, Dennis Kenyon, 18, and Jane Biddolph, 23, all died instantly when the helicopter smashed into the ground and burst into flames minutes after taking off on a pleasure trip from the Booker airfield in High Wycombe, Bucks.. .. .Pilot Mr Loft of Reigate, Surrey, and his companions, from Shoreham in West Sussex, were pronounced dead at the scene of the crash.. .. .Kenward, a trained aircraft engineer, licensed by the Civil Aviation Authority and with years of experience, pleaded guilty before the trial to three separate charges in connection with the fatal accident.. .. .He admitted allowing an aircraft to fly without a valid certificate of authority, a further charge of endangering an aircraft and failing to make an entry into an aircraft log book. Sentencing has been adjourned for reports and will be held at a date to be fixed.. .. .The judge Mr Justice Aitkens told Kenward that he was considering all possibilities including a term of imprisonment. The maximum sentence Kenward can face is an unlimited fine, two years in prison or both.. .. .Outside the court, Brendan Loft's father, Walter, 74, said: "We are very disappointed with the result. I feel terribly frustrated with the court system. This verdict sends out the wrong message to those involved in the maintenance of aircraft. We have lost a wonderful, wonderful son."</font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">
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Old 27th Mar 2002, 19:17
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The last two years have been tragic for all involved, having flown heli's out of Biggin I have been associated with the engineer in question and was extremely surprised as everyone else who has known him of the allegations and court case. . .. .My thoughts are with the family of the deceased.. .. .My feelings are that the eventual verdict is not a negative message towards engineers and quality of work, the very idea of waiting two years for the verdict in a manslaughter case must be the biggest reason ever not to cut corners!. .. .I believe the message is very clear 'stick to the rules or this could happen to you'. .He has served his two year sentence.
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Old 27th Mar 2002, 19:31
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Two Years for three Fatals and the loss of an Aircraft.......Hmmmm, not to bad. Just shows what a good lawyer can do for you.... .Sometimes Pilots put too much faith in maintenance. Not being familiar with the case, Im wondering if the pilot was aware. Might have made a difference....... .Anyway, sad day all around.
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Old 27th Mar 2002, 19:35
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Bert :. .. . I suspect the accident report on this one will be published in a few days, now the legal side of things appears to be finished.. .. . Check the <a href="http://www.aaib.detr.gov.uk/whatsnew/news.htm" target="_blank">UK AAIB What's New</a> web page about 10th - 12th April.
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Old 28th Mar 2002, 02:16
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B Sousa. .As I read the report, 2 years is the maximum sentence for the ANO offences (Negligently endangering a/c etc). He'll get less than that because he admitted those charges.. .The trial was just over whether it was manslaughter or not. The jury said it wasn't.. .. .IMHO, a tragedy all round. Nothing to be gained by ruining the guy's life even more than it's been ruined already. He was an ordinary working guy who made a mistake which will be on his conscience for ever, and will never get his licence back.. .There but for the grace of God etc. .. .Anyone know if Flying Lawyer defended him?
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Old 28th Mar 2002, 02:31
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Sousa... .. .Have to question your pilot / awareness quote....Surely there comes a time when a pilot has to put his faith in the staff that support the on-going operation.. .. .Every input to an aircraft operation is vital....that's why so many checks + balances are in place...... .. .That poor engineer....he's learnt by experience the hard way....Let's hope the whole of the industry can learn from such a mistake....Horrifying.
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Old 28th Mar 2002, 04:10
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Agree pretty much with all the above. My experience has been as a pilot to get all the mechanical knowledge of the aircraft as I possibly can. Thats what I meant "was the pilot aware." I can guarantee I wouldnt settle for a weld job on a tailboom.... .Im sure the engineer/mechanic has a heavy load on him to carry for some time..... .Things are different here, they are throwing away the key on some for vehicular manslaughter cases.. .I also agree, there but for fortune....
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