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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 4th Mar 2017, 08:50
  #101 (permalink)  
 
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Different Cuba - I'm RAF too. Always rolled on the way down - does imply that in the Google pics. Anyway - we make a similar point eh?
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 09:08
  #102 (permalink)  
 
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I just re-read something in the report where it states that the Display Authorisation to carry out low level aerobatics in a Hunter (AND a JP!!) was awarded by a CAA representative watching a display in an RV-8 piston engined home build!!!
There is the second elephant for goodness sake.
By the way, I am ex RAF and 3 tours on FJ.
Yes that was the big WTF? moment for me in the report as well, although there were others. As I said on the Flypast Forum no one comes out of this 'smelling of roses'.
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 09:12
  #103 (permalink)  
 
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Prior to this accident Arfur, that was within the guidelines as defined by CAP403.


The pilots display currency/DA's at the time was also within the CAP403 guidelines as they were. all of his paperwork was very much in order.


The question of whether or not his 40 odd hours in a Hunter over the last 5 years or so was enough quickly became a very valid point of course......


As a former FJ pilot yourself, I wonder if I gave you the 'keys' to one of your former mounts and said 'go away and work up a display routine', how many hours would you want me to sign you off for to make sure you were ready to go in front of the public?
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 09:21
  #104 (permalink)  
 
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I understand that this was all in the guidelines and that all of his paperwork was all in order. My question is how on earth did the CAA ever think that being able to renew a DA for a fast jet via a piston GA aircraft was okay?
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 09:32
  #105 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by JEM60
To some extent, I agree with SILLERT. BUT... If I make a split second bad decision in my car and and kill 11 pedestrians at a bus queue, then I am afraid that the full force of the Law would come down on me. Killing 11 people with a bad decision in an aeroplane can be no different. I would not like to see him penalised by the Law, but I am afraid that you cannot have one law for cars, and another one for aircraft, where, technically, the offence is exactly the same.
I was waiting for someone to make this point.

The fact that AH wanted to flying the display and go home is irrelevant. The same applies to the driver who has one drink too many, or drives at 90 on the motorway, or runs a red light.

It just seems from some posts that if you commit a significant error and kill people, so long as you are in a plane "that's OK then"

The only thing that I get from this sad event is that it's now not just the pilot and air show director who require jail time, but those responsible for maintaining the aircraft too. Anyone who disagrees can go and stand in a room with the families of the dead and discuss it with them.
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 09:36
  #106 (permalink)  

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What was needed to escape the manoeuvre? As well as the other measures mentioned, the speed needed to before starting to roll out. I flew the Hunter a loooong time ago, but 105kts seems to me to be less than control speed. The T7 always felt like a heavy beast compared with the F6 or FGA9.
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 09:45
  #107 (permalink)  
 
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I have held my tongue on this but, I have always thought he did not properly prepare for the manoeuvre he was about to perform.....in other words he ballsed it up. The detail is all over this thread. Closing ranks on here will not help those who grieve.
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 09:56
  #108 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by eal401
I was waiting for someone to make this point.

The fact that AH wanted to flying the display and go home is irrelevant. The same applies to the driver who has one drink too many, or drives at 90 on the motorway, or runs a red light.

It just seems from some posts that if you commit a significant error and kill people, so long as you are in a plane "that's OK then"

The only thing that I get from this sad event is that it's now not just the pilot and air show director who require jail time, but those responsible for maintaining the aircraft too. Anyone who disagrees can go and stand in a room with the families of the dead and discuss it with them.
You can't do that {prosecute the pilot} if he didn't wilfully do anything that he knew broke the rules, you really can't - the whole non-fault incident reporting and improvement system sort of depends on it. I mean, in catastrophic incidents it is incredibly rare to have surviving aircrew in any position to prosecute for being fallible, so the gain in successful prosecutions would be tiny, but what would be lost? The next time a Human Factors incident occurs with a live pilot who can describe why they did what they did to investigators, they won't, and perhaps hundreds of people will die in identical crashes that could have been prevented as a result.

Yes, if somebody drives a car & makes a mistake because they misread a bend and kill somebody they go to jail for it, but that's a bug in our current traffic safety system not a feature that air crash investigators need to emulate...
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 10:34
  #109 (permalink)  
 
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To use this analogy, if someone speeds or is drink driving they break the law and are prosecuted. If AH did not have a medical or other paperwork, fine - prosecute him too. However if you travel at 30mph round a bend but skid on ice and kill someone prosecution is far from certain and the same applies here. An error of judgement should not be a crime.

Rabid calls to jail him will cost the taxpayer a fortune and destroy a family for no benefit. It may even further harm GA and the weekend amateurs generate tax and jobs.

As a doctor at the sharp end I make mistakes - any doctor who doesnt is a liar. Whether those mistakes cause harm is more luck than anything. I learn from them, educate to eliminate them and try to impose unrealistic standards upon myself but at the end of the day if something goes wrong I carry insurance so my patient can be put right as much as possible.

The families may well go down this path and a civil court will have to weigh up all the imponderables raised in this thread and the report. That will be hell for both them and AH. But jail??? No
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 10:34
  #110 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by McDuff
What was needed to escape the manoeuvre? As well as the other measures mentioned, the speed needed to before starting to roll out. I flew the Hunter a loooong time ago, but 105kts seems to me to be less than control speed.
Clearly the AAIB don't agree:

"From the apex height and airspeed achieved in the accident manoeuvre, and for up to at least four seconds after passing the apex, it would have been possible for an appropriately trained pilot to fly a straightforward escape manoeuvre in G-BXFI which would have prevented impact with the ground by rolling the aircraft through 180 back to erect flight and then pulling out of the dive to regain level flight."
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 10:36
  #111 (permalink)  
 
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What better example of holes in cheese ?
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 11:05
  #112 (permalink)  
 
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The unique aspect of this incident is that the aircraft crashed away from the display area, killing and injuring people who had no involvement in the air display. If you pay to watch an air display, you accept that there is a small element of risk watching aircraft maneouvre at close quarters. Persons away from the display area have no idea that they may be at risk, or may have taken a deliberate decision to avoid such risks. The public outside of a display area are entitled to believe that the organisers of air displays and pilots have taken every step to avoid and mitigate any risk to general members of the public going about their daily business. That certainly did not happen at Shoreham. Various factors served to increase the risks of an accident happening, the display area, the type of aircraft, aircraft maintenance, weather conditions and pilot experience on the type. Ultimately the blame must be laid before the pilot who was responsible for an error of judgement and a failure to take action to recover from the maneouvre by rolling the aircraft upright and out of the loop when this was still possible.

Should criminal proceedings take place, jail sentences for the organisers or pilot might not be seen to be justice in relation to this incident, but it will certainly act as a warning to organisers of future displays as to the consequences of inadequate planning and safety considerations. Air displays are extremely popular, but general members of the public who choose not to attend are entitled to expect the highest level of protection from these activities. That is what makes this incident so tragic, because the controls that will now be enforced will serve to limit some of the activities and aircraft that make air displays so popular.
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 11:20
  #113 (permalink)  
 
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so let me get this right Gouli - you jail the pilot to dissuade future display organisers. If I may say so that sort of justice is more common in some foreign dictatorships than England.

I fully agree people who had not intended to watch the display were killed. I am not sure that makes the death any different in the eyes of the law or indeed many of us. however the decision on the display line was that of the organisers and the CAA (!!), not the pilot. The report states he was correctly positioned along the display line. Had he been displaying off line he would have committed an offense.

I am not getting into what should happen to the organisers - I have no expertise or knowledge there - but your arguments seem to shift blame if there is any to shift legally from the pilot.

Last edited by homonculus; 4th Mar 2017 at 12:24. Reason: positioning comment refers to the display line not height
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 11:45
  #114 (permalink)  
 
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The problem is trying to ascertain when the pilot knew he had a problem that needed resolving.

If he knew at the apex that there was a problem and he didn't take the appropriate action ie emergency measures this could be deemed negligence but maybe he was unaware at the time due other factors such as altimeter mis-reading the height, the engine not having the thrust he thought he had etc and it wasn't till he was half way down the loop or near the bottom that he had a problem.

Does any ex hunter pilot know what the 'emergency' plan would be then... eject and leave the aircraft to its own devices or try and plant it somewhere safer and maybe kill yourself trying..
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 11:51
  #115 (permalink)  
 
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I think we may find that there are 'other considerations' to be taken into account in this accident.

Like the need for justice to be seen to be done?
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 11:54
  #116 (permalink)  
 
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An incident occured where many completely uninvolved people were killed or injured away from the air display area. There were a combination of factors that ultimately led to this tragedy, but the primary factor has to be that the pilot misjudged the maneouvre.

A large number of people had their lives irrevokably changed that day as a result of an incident that should have been avoidable. Whether criminal proceedings take place, or not, is a matter for the judiciary. What penalties might be imposed are again a matter for the judiciary. I am merely pointing out that the sentences imposed by our courts frequently do not directly reflect the case being considered but are intended to act as a deterrent to others who might be tempted to act in a similar manner, or avoid their responsibilities towards public safety. I would suggest corporate manslaughter charges are a distinct possibility in this particular incident.

I make no judgement as to the potential outcome but clearly there is a public demand that a price and compensation for the victims be paid. For that to happen, someone will have to be held responsible.
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 12:08
  #117 (permalink)  
 
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I am not sure there is a public demand for criminal as opposed to civil proceedings gouli. time will tell. In the meantime I hope professional pilots will reflect on the precedence this might set for aviation and try to avert a witchunt that might effect many of us in the future

I agree with Hebog that any considerations will not be that simple. But I dont think we can judge HA's decisions against that of an established hunter pilot. The regulator and the rules are satisfied for this display to be conducted by a pilot with perhaps only 60 hours on type and a degree of self education. He will be judged by those standards, and others may need to answer as to whether the standards were adequate.
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 12:16
  #118 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by G0ULI
An incident occured where many completely uninvolved people were killed or injured away from the air display area. There were a combination of factors that ultimately led to this tragedy, but the primary factor has to be that the pilot misjudged the maneouvre.

A large number of people had their lives irrevokably changed that day as a result of an incident that should have been avoidable. Whether criminal proceedings take place, or not, is a matter for the judiciary. What penalties might be imposed are again a matter for the judiciary. I am merely pointing out that the sentences imposed by our courts frequently do not directly reflect the case being considered but are intended to act as a deterrent to others who might be tempted to act in a similar manner, or avoid their responsibilities towards public safety. I would suggest corporate manslaughter charges are a distinct possibility in this particular incident.

I make no judgement as to the potential outcome but clearly there is a public demand that a price and compensation for the victims be paid. For that to happen, someone will have to be held responsible.
You can't deter humans from being fallible, it is a symptom of the human condition. You can put hard legal constraints around activities to make them safer, like making drink driving illegal, knowing that this mitigates the overall risk by reducing incidence of drunk driving which is a specific activity that increases risk significantly, but you really can't prosecute people for failures of perception or faulty decision making under pressure without setting flying safety back to the dark ages. If the pilot knowingly broke safety rules, that would be grounds for prosecution, conviction if you could prove it beyond reasonable doubt, civil liability on the balance of probabilities. If the pilot complied with all the rules but the maintainers & operators didn't, prosecute them and make an example of them, if the air show organiser broke the rules then prosecute them, but if everybody followed the rules, the rules themselves are clearly inadequate...
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 12:18
  #119 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by homonculus
The report states he was correctly positioned. Had he been displaying off line he would have committed an offense.
No he wasn't.

Leaving aside the height issues, the horizontal profile started to go wrong from the point where he rolled more than the required amount during the climbing segment of the "bent loop", with the result that the final track was broadly aligned with the A27 instead of the display line (2.2.1).
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Old 4th Mar 2017, 12:20
  #120 (permalink)  
 
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GOULI
To completely mitigate the risk to people not involved or attending an air display, due possible aircraft malfunction or pilot error as you appear to want, is unrealistic.
You would need to sterilise(i.e temporarily remove all the inhabitants)in the area around and under the intended flightpath of display participants. In this case no off airfield spectators on all roads under the flightpath, all local highways closed to traffic, large police presence to enforce, and empty most of Shoreham town.
or of course ban all air displays.
Nothing in life is risk free. This was a tragic accident and knee jerk reactions are not the solution.
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