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AAIB investigation to Hawker Hunter T7 G-BXFI 22 August 2015

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AAIB investigation to Hawker Hunter T7 G-BXFI 22 August 2015

Old 8th Mar 2017, 18:12
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18 pages and I am yet to read 'Too slow, too low'
Actually, WallyWitless said it back in post 5.
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 18:28
  #362 (permalink)  
 
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The AAIB report says a sketch of the aerobatics routine and topo map of the area was found in the pilots pocket. It was not inserted in the transparency pocket and anyway the pilot did not carry out the routine that was sketched on it. So what was his intention, was it to surprise everybody a la monty python " and now for something completely different". We will never know as he did not quite finish the first bit because... perhaps the cognitive thing got in the way.
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 18:46
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So what's the recommendation?

In future, at public air displays:

1. Pilots shall ---
2. Aircraft shall ---
3. Organisers shall ---

If we are going to learn a lesson, we need answers to those questions -- unless we accept this was just 'one of those things, a tragic accident'? Are there any lessons that can be learnt from overseas? Maybe there is a template in another (preferably English-speaking) nation that can be copied and pasted into our own UK regs? In what way are the FAA rules different? Is theirs better than ours?
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 19:06
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Originally Posted by Carbon Bootprint
Actually, WallyWitless said it back in post 5.
That is perfectly true, Prior to reading this I had just happened on it.

I'll get my coat.
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 19:14
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John Farley.....

Quote "The report makes it clear that the speeds and heights he flew were fine for the JP which he had recently displayed. I find it easier to believe that he made a single cognitive error in loading his head with the JP numbers rather that he was trying to fly Hunter numbers and made a bog of it."

I have to disagree with your statement, surely part of display flying or test flying is involves a lot of mental preparation, personally I am astounded that the the AAIB put forward the thesis and I question if a psychologist with any knowledge of flying would suggest such a thing.

Are you saying that AH as an Airbus pilot, would not recognise if he was flying a A320 or A320 which have almost identical flight decks, unlike the JP and Hunter which are very different. I do accept that in respect of the A319, A320 and A321, ongoing tailstrikes are a result of confusion of the correct pitch up in real time.

From a point of veiw of cognitive psychology, I was astounded that anyone can believe he did not know what aircaft he was flying, different instrument layout, visual cues, tactile cues, aural cues and as previously mentioned the mental preparation for a display which is essential.

I seem to remember in the Airbus A330 Toulouse accident, but I may be wrong, it was suggested that the chief test pilot (NW) may have thought he was flying an A320, in my opinion it was not the primary causal factor.

If you are a display pilot you need to remember what aircraft type your flying, the speeds, gates as well of knowing who the current prime minister is!
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 19:17
  #366 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Lemain
So what's the recommendation?

In future, at public air displays:

1. Pilots shall ---
2. Aircraft shall ---
3. Organisers shall ---

If we are going to learn a lesson, we need answers to those questions -- unless we accept this was just 'one of those things, a tragic accident'? Are there any lessons that can be learnt from overseas? Maybe there is a template in another (preferably English-speaking) nation that can be copied and pasted into our own UK regs? In what way are the FAA rules different? Is theirs better than ours?
My guess for the recommendation to all three would be in- shall- a .
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 19:39
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The bent loop was performed around a mile to the east of the display centre.

The Hunter was running in towards the airfield, and only needed a change of heading of 25 to run down the display line.

Was the height and speed at the entry to the bent loop consistent with a fast pass?

Was the loop part of the intended routine or was it done on the spur of the moment? A map was found with some Aresti-style scribbles on it, but the report doesn't attempt to link these with this or any previous displays...

Last edited by Nige321; 8th Mar 2017 at 20:53. Reason: Lopresti... Where did he come from?!
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 20:53
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BVCU
"so where now would they find the expertise now ? "
How about Bristol, were the design team, tech support and incident investigation was based, EK was just an overhaul facility, all operational issues and investigation was (and still is) carried out from Bristol. RR are probably the only organisation with access to engine performance data. I think this was demonstrated on the appendix to the report
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 20:56
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John F,

The report makes it clear that the speeds and heights he flew were fine for the JP which he had recently displayed. I find it easier to believe that he made a single cognitive error in loading his head with the JP numbers rather that he was trying to fly Hunter numbers and made a bog of it.
Logical but that still doesn't explain why:

1) Thrust was reduced during the manoeuvre - surely if full thrust is the order of the day in a Hunter, it certainly would be in a JP?

2) The manoeuvre was commenced much earlier than one might expect given the display area. Had the pull up been in the right place, would it have achieved 350kts by then - assuming full thrust applied? (I have no FJ experience so would be interested to know)

3) The aircraft ended up significantly off axis just prior to impact when you'd expect it to be on the A axis.
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:12
  #370 (permalink)  
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Sillert V.I.
If he'd flown away, we could have learned everything we've learned from this, and probably much more, without any of the tragic consequences. It does beg the question of why we didn't seemingly learn it from the Typhoon incident.
I think it important to consider that whilst we might, we probably wouldn't.

This incident has been turned inside out ONLY because the aircraft hit the ground. The engineering deficiencies have been discovered because a crash made the AAIB go looking at the books. Why didn't the CAA go looking at the books before the crash?

We seem to get this every time there is a fatal impact. The investigation turns up something that was plain to see, if only it had been looked at beforehand.

What is it that the CAA do, apart from issue invoices?
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:22
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Originally Posted by Tay Cough
Logical but that still doesn't explain why:

1) Thrust was reduced during the manoeuvre
One thought I'd had for that was he thought he had too much energy and was fine tuning the pullup to make the gate; the implication being that he either remembered the wrong gate height, or misread the altimeter by 1000ft. Fine tuning to hit the wrong height precisely; somewhat akin to the gross error in the hubble space telescope.

This is pure speculation of course; we still have no way of knowing if the thrust changes were actually commanded by the pilot. But I can't think of any reason you'd intentionally reduce thrust on the way up unless you thought you'd have too much height/speed at the apex.

Last edited by Sillert,V.I.; 8th Mar 2017 at 21:40.
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:23
  #372 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Lemain
So what's the recommendation?
You mean apart from the 32 recommendations that were made as part of the investigation?

Originally Posted by Tay Cough
1) Thrust was reduced during the manoeuvre
The investigation has not established whether the thrust reduction was commanded or not.

2) The manoeuvre was commenced much earlier than one might expect given the display area.
What's your source for that assertion ?
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:35
  #373 (permalink)  
 
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My eyes. Compare the video of the Bray display for example with one of Shoreham.
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:39
  #374 (permalink)  
 
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OK. That's something the AAIB don't seem to have picked up.
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:40
  #375 (permalink)  
 
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Yes how ironic a typo which I have corrected, to the effect that a pilot needs to know if he is flying an A320, A330, A340 or a JP, RV8 or Hunter.

The point is missed, a typo is very different to not knowing what aircraft you are flying in respect of the target speeds and gates. Do we seriously think he thought he was flying a JP, but actually flying a Hunter T7. What rubiish. There are people on here who are happy to support that AH was not negligent, yet he clearly was, the evidence is there.

Please get real about this accident!
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:45
  #376 (permalink)  
 
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Not sure you'll find a 'bent loop' in an aresti catalogue...Or even a quarter clover but that name caused carnage last time it was mentioned.

In fact isn't that part of the issue? What is the plan around flying a 'bent loop'? Is it roll upwards? roll downwards? 90deg off? roll to a heading? Roll to a feature? It didn't fit the same pattern as the display prior...

There is a lot of effort and head scratching for limited value add. The actual target gate height had been given by the pilot in interview as somewhere in the order of 4-5000ft. So the delta between that and actual is huge to the point that it wouldn't even look the same from looking out of the window never mind the altimeter - of which one under read and the other was tested as being accurate.

A few have suggested that the starting height wasn't accepted as low and one cited an prior AAIB report - well it may seem given the current reports recommendation that views have changed and certainly to date nobody is giving a process that is repeatable (and recognised by any FDD) in the respect of flying by at nought feet to enter his aerobatics at a different height. Certainly not one that would match what was seen here at any rate.

As for the influence of 'g' at the top of a loop it is close to zero.

You kind of have to think that either there was little by way of a plan should things not go well or as JF suggests errors were not recognised.

Last edited by Pittsextra; 9th Mar 2017 at 01:04. Reason: bent loop.. What the fook is that?
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Old 8th Mar 2017, 21:53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tay Cough View Post
My eyes. Compare the video of the Bray display for example with one of Shoreham.
OK. That's something the AAIB don't seem to have picked up.
To be fair it has been and covered in comments around highlighting to others what the sequence to be flown is. Regardless of roll on the way up or down the level of detail in a display sequence wasn't required - even though I agree it may not have helped here.
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Old 9th Mar 2017, 00:27
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There seems to be a common thread to this display... A lack of speed, or throttle control. As the vertical climb had two quick reductions in engine speed, could this have been caused by inadequate throttle friction?


Does anyone here know the layout of the throttle control on the Hunter?


.
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Old 9th Mar 2017, 00:48
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Looking at the human factors side of things. The pilot was flying the display in place of a colleague who was originally scheduled to fly, but had booked a holiday. So was there an element of not really wanting to fly this display, or feeling pressured to fly?

Next we have what appears to have been fairly poor preparation from notes and documents in the pilot's clothing. Information that should have been readily visible as a reminder of the display sequence, radio frequencies and other information was folded in a pocket and not available at a glance.

Then there is the down wind take off on a warm day with a fully fueled aircraft. Knowing the runway at North Weald, I can see that might make sense to take advantage of the gradient, but it goes against normal aviation practice of always taking off into wind when possible.

At the beginning of the display sequence the aircraft was already technically breaching display height authorisation, which specifies a minimum altitude and not a target to be achieved.

The whole affair begins to look like a bit of a casually organised shambles. Casual preparation, casual risk taking on take off, a casual approach to display limits, a perhaps reluctant acceptance to fly the display to avoid disappointing the crowd, or perhaps to generate some much needed income for the team maintaining and flying the aircraft.

Arrive at the display, lovely day, unlimited visibility, relax, chuck the aircraft around the sky and forget to concentrate on the figures, just fly by feel, until it all went wrong.

Then of course there is the light handed approach by regulators and display organisers with respect to displaying vintage aircraft. For years a pragmatic approach has been taken towards maintenance, certification and minor breaches of regulations. Most matters seeming settled by a frank discussion over the phone or in a bar at the end of a day.

The number of recommendations for safety improvements and tightening of controls in the AAIB report must set some sort of a record for a single accident.

Nobody wants to see an end to flying displays and particularly historic aircraft, but if there are going to be controls, they must be enforced and the CAA should take a much closer interest in aviation outside of their commercial remit. Something similar how the FAA deal with airshows in the US would be a start. For many years private aviation in the UK seems to have been regarded as an unnecessary encumbrance by the CAA, something grudgingly accepted, but to be discouraged at all costs if they can set their prices high enough.
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Old 9th Mar 2017, 03:42
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Given the number of accidents and near misses (eg: Typhoon) at air shows, at times flown by personnel in a professional capacity by military display pilots, who are to be assumed as being really on top of their game, we have to assume that repeats are in the future. The only way forward is to give such safety areas that an accident will not involve third parties, or, attendees at such shows need to recognise that they are engaging in a hazardous sport and have to accept the consequences. (sport defined as: diversion; recreation; pleasant pastime). Life involves risk, and risk can not be eliminated entirely.





Too close for comfort - for the bystanders.

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