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Thread: Shoreham Investigation Update

  1. #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by HP111 View Post
    'Police Notice' or 'Polite Notice'? A photograph would help clarify the official standing of the notice.
    My recollection is that it said 'Police Notice'.....and I so nearly took a photograph. Did anybody else? There were so few people on the bridge that evening.

    Quote Originally Posted by ZRX61 View Post
    Prosecution for what exactly? Loitering with intent to look in a particular direction?
    Not sure exactly? But (again) that is my recollection.
    WA$.

  2. #182
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    Thinking about it - If it is a public route the police have the power to close it temporarily in the interests of public safety. So I don't see a problem. I suppose not everyone will agree with such closures, but they are obliged to abide by them. The underlying issue here is that if various parties are being criticised, then police and council should also come under scrutiny.

  3. #183
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    The 'route' wasn't closed, at least the old A27 toll-bridge wasn't closed, and the new A27 certainly wasn't closed.
    Last edited by Creaking Door; 5th March 2017 at 21:26.
    WA$.

  4. #184
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce View Post
    I see no harm in wanting to be certain that there were no ongoing issues, though it has taken too long for the aircraft to be exonerated.
    My point exactly.
    If it had been a commercial type where massive amounts of money were being lost and airline schedules disrupted, there would have been quicker action. Likewise, if it had been a popular historic type, one can imagine the headlines in some of the popular press about "banning" the Spitfire from UK skies.

    With the Hunter, neither of those situations applied, so there was no hurry to clear it...and as I said the grounding gave the authorities the appearance of doing something in the wake of the tragedy.

    It will be interesting to see how long the grounding order remains in place despite the report apparently not finding fault with the type.
    Last edited by J Boyle; 5th March 2017 at 18:13.
    There are two sides to every story. The truth is usually somewhere between the two.

  5. #185
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    Some interesting and qualified words from Hunter owner and highly experienced display and aerobatic pilot, Jonathan Whaley, in response to comments about the report and accident on his Miss Demeanour FB page: -

    Please take all conversations about the Shoreham crash somewhere else.
    I cannot go in to details due to ongoing involvement but many of you are misinterpreting the information in the AAIB's report, making assumptions that are simply incorrect because you are unfamiliar with the aircraft, its instruments, the feel when flying, experience in display flying, in fact are totally unqualified to make any analysis whatsoever.
    Pages 195-203 are all you need to read and even then some of the conclusions are at best, clutching at straws.
    https://www.facebook.com/MissDemeano...=page_internal

    I think he makes a very good point that some of the conclusions "are at best, clutching at straws".

    And the fact that some (and that would include the press) are misinterpreting the information in the report.

    Cheers

    Paul
    Last edited by Bradburger; 5th March 2017 at 20:40.
    The most usless commodity in aerobatics is the amount of sky above you!

  6. #186
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    Although nice to hear from an actual Hunter operator (a rare breed these days), really he should have remained silent instead of producing a meaningless statement like that. There are 88 specific conclusions, to which ones is he referring?

    Steve
    75-Stay alive, 76-Radio tricks, 77-Going to Heaven.

  7. #187
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    "clutching at straws"

    The report shows there were issues with the Hunter, but none that explain the crash. It also shows there were several discrepancies in the fatal manoeuvre that did not match the pilot's stated intention. The pilot can not explain why this happened. What room is left other than to speculate as to how he could have made those errors?

    People died and there is a need for some logical explanation. Not to have a scapegoat to blame, but to prevent such a tragedy happening again.

    If the cause remains unclear, I would suggest the final restrictions imposed on this year's displays will need to cast a very wide net.

  8. #188
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    We are all looking for the `why` and that will never be found.
    Accidents are a combination of factors, conditions, errors that, on their own
    will go unnoticed but combine on the fateful day to result in tragedy.

    Time to reflect, move on and hope it doesn't happen again.

  9. #189
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    The 'why' has been found - the pilot put the aircraft into a manouver which didn't allow for room for it to recover.

    There isn't a grey area to it - humans make mistakes - there are plenty of past examples to learn from.

  10. #190
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    I would have thought that any current vintage jet operator would do better to keep their opinions to themselves at this juncture, and concentrate instead on making sure that their own aircraft can now meet the new safety requirements, rather than making comments online that are already stirring up further unhelpful speculation etc on forums.

  11. #191
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    Apart from engine or airframe problems, the answer has to be 'low and slow' also known as, in other circumstances; 'the graveyard glide'.

    Its been around since Sir George's footman made the first flight.

  12. #192
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Burke View Post
    The 'why' has been found - the pilot put the aircraft into a manouver which didn't allow for room for it to recover.
    That's a what not a why.

    We don't know and probably never will why he did that.

  13. #193
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    Which is usually the case in these investigations, unless you can speak with the departed pilot.

    We know the cause now. We know there were a number of other contributing factors, which taken in the round would not have stopped the crash from happening, unless the aircraft had been prevented from getting airborne that morning.

  14. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce View Post
    Which is usually the case in these investigations, unless you can speak with the departed pilot.

    We know the cause now. We know there were a number of other contributing factors, which taken in the round would not have stopped the crash from happening, unless the aircraft had been prevented from getting airborne that morning.
    Yes. Pilot error, pure and simple. It has shown the shortcomings of everything else surrounding the operation of this aircraft mind and no one comes out smelling of roses. The aircraft crashed because the air frame was never within the parameters to successfully carry out the manoeuvre (regardless of malfunctioning instruments and engines) and the captain did not recognise this at any stage until the the last few seconds (when he is fighting desperately to correct his errors).

  15. #195
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    The bigger question still for me is why the pilot attempted the maneuver outside of the airfield boundary in the first place.

    Normally any display maneuver is aimed at crowd centre unless its a re-positioning which he had already completed.

    So it appears to me he was too early, too low and too slow.

  16. #196
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    The manoeuvres may be aimed at crowd centre, but with only 4,000 ft from boundary to boundary on the display axis a 300 mph plus aircraft is never going to complete a display within a box equating to the airfield dimensions.

    Even Old Warden with its slow biplanes wouldn't aspire to that.

    Moggy
    Last edited by Moggy C; 7th March 2017 at 15:06.
    "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

  17. #197
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moggy C View Post
    .. with only 4,000 ft from boundary to boundary on the display axis a 300 mph plus aircraft is never going to complete a display within a box equating to the airfield dimensions.
    As Moggy has said, Shoreham is a very small display axis, and my impression, over many years attendance, was that many display aircraft seem(ed) to start or finish manoeuvers beyond the airfield boundaries - many such manoeuvres were clearly part of the "reversal" process, but most heavier types, or fast jets (even JPs from memory) could not keep their full displays within the airfield footprint, and towards the south-west the extended display axis has very little option but to fly over, or very close to developed areas, and to the north East, the busy A27, and two road junctions (one large one small) were ever present, along with the South Downs.

    Given the lack of "undeveloped" land around the airfield, there is/was very little room for manoeuvre, and only very light, very slow, or very manoeuvrable aircraft stood any chance of remaining within the airfield boundary - as Moggy says even Shuttleworth displays would struggle to stay entirely within their airfield boundary, though Old Warden has the benefit that it is surrounded by largely unpopulated land, unlike Shoreham where there is very little unpopulated land around the airfield.

    The display site map (included in the AAIB report IIRC) clearly shows the limited 'free space" available to Shoreham display aircraft, with all the surrounding built up and "no over fly" zones leaving very little room for error. The run in from the southwest is very restricted, and even though the area at the other end of the dispaly axis (i.e. to north east) is less heavily populated, the presence of the South Downs, the A27, and Lancing college leave/left little room should things go badly awry.

    Hindsight is wonderful, but it is clear that Shoreham airport was a less than perfect display venue - especially given the proximity of the coast, which would have offerred a far less restricted display axis, though the origins of the display (as a fund raiser for RAFA) probably meant that a seaside-display was never really an attractive option to the organissrs, as the opportunity to collect entry fees would be much reduced, and collecting buckets would probably never have raised so much money for RAFA over the years.

    Again, with hindsight maybe past incidents at Shoreham, including a forced landing by a Beagle 206 with undercarriage problems (landed safely on the runway at end of the dispaly albeit with one main gear retracted), a forced landing immediately after engine problems on take-off by a Harvard (ended up landing on its gear without major damage in a field on the north eastern side of the A27/Coombe Road junction), and the fatal crash of the Hurricane on the South Downs a few years ago, might perhaps have lead to a more circumspect review of "worst case "what if..?" scenarios. But hindsight is a wonderful thing.

    The 2015 display organisers assessed risks in accordance with the then pertaining CAA regulations, and CAA ultimately authorised/approved the display site, there were signs and (I understand) staff on hand to try to move A27 pedestrians on, plus fences to help block the view of the runway (again in hope of discouraging bystanders). But, ultimately, none of those things prevented fatalities among those outside the display site's official/designated crowd area.

    Unfortunately, in today's risk-averse culture where few people seem willing to take responsibility for their own actions, it is often all too easy to point the finger at the failings of others.

    Sadly, many, many 'holes in the cheese' lined up that day, with tragic results.

    Paul F

    Had the road junction been clear of pedestrian spectators the number of fatalities would, undoubtedly, have been fewer, but given some of those killed were simply using the A27 to go about their legitimate (non-airshow related) business, I suspect the AAIB report would still read much the same?
    Last edited by Moggy C; 7th March 2017 at 15:07.

  18. #198
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    My comments was not that the Hunter could have performed all maneuvers within the confines of the airfield, but that the loop had it been successful would have been almost wholly outside the airfield.

    Indeed, the fact that the crash occurred after some time in a mushed stalled state and the bottom of the loop would have extended the flight path which I am sure is what the pilot was doing his utmost to do to avoid the road and any public.

    I agree with the limited free space at Shoreham, but it did provide a very picturesque setting. I understand the reds didn't fly at Shoreham due to the surrounding nature of the land, but the RAF attended in some force including the BBMF, and I am sure they must all do a risk assessment.

    With the exception of the Hurricane, all other incidents including a glider stalling and crashing on the runway, could have occurred at any other venue, so not sure why this is pertinent to Shoreham apart from highlight the fact that airshows do contain risk.

    Even "safer" seaside venues like Eastbourne have aircraft approaching directly towards the town at high speed, so there is risk should something unforeseen occur.

  19. #199
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    Quote Originally Posted by wes View Post
    The bigger question still for me is why the pilot attempted the maneuver outside of the airfield boundary in the first place.

    Normally any display maneuver is aimed at crowd centre unless its a re-positioning which he had already completed.

    So it appears to me he was too early, too low and too slow.
    That has always been the question I have asked also, and a huge factor that many have missed, and even the AAIB have failed to question.

    The report states (and at last mentions) that the accident maneuver was started 900m (or just under half a nautical mile) from the display axis (which I take to be it's start), but it goes no further in questioning it or possible reasons as to why it was started such a long way from the start of the display axis - that is, over the airfield.

    Whilst you'd quite rightly expect a positioning maneuver such as a wing over or derry turn to be done outside of the airfield (depending on the type displaying, it's speed, and the size of the airfield), I wouldn't, nor have ever, seen an act do a looping maneuver outside of the airfield boundary (that is at each end of the display line), simply because it does not make sense.

    This is both from a spectators point of view, and more importantly, the pilots, in that if it did all go tango uniform, you would want it to do so over the the airfield where you are likely to do yourself and the aircraft some harm, and not members of the public.

    The fact is, from the video I've seen of Andy Hill's 2014 Hunter display at Shoreham, he did it where he and the organisers would have wanted, and expected it to be done - over the airfield!

    I'm pretty sure if in 2015 the maneuver had been successful, the Shoreham FCC would have stopped his display due to where loop had started and finished, and this goes for any FCC I should imagine!

    Citing low and slow is one thing, but the important question is, as wes quite rightly points out, the reason for the maneuver being entered where it was - that is, well outside of the airfield boundary.

    Cheers

    Paul
    Last edited by Bradburger; 7th March 2017 at 18:17.
    The most usless commodity in aerobatics is the amount of sky above you!

  20. #200
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    Quote Originally Posted by wes View Post
    The bigger question still for me is why the pilot attempted the maneuver outside of the airfield boundary in the first place. .
    On what evidence is this statement based?

    I certainly can't see it within the report, indeed the plot on P45 (Fig 10) seems to indicate that the bent loop was executed above the airfield.

    Rather than let myths grow up lets make certain what is written on this thread is accurate.

    My reading of the report has been pretty cursory, so I totally accept that I may have missed something. But clarification is important I am sure you'll agree?

    Moggy
    "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

  21. #201
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    Moggy,

    Whilst it may appear from the radar/Google Earth plot that it did, it didn't.

    From the report: -

    5. The accident manoeuvre started and finished outside the aerodrome
    boundary, over an area not controlled by the organisers of the flying
    display.
    8. The manoeuvre started approximately 900 m from the display line at a
    height of 185 ±25ft agl.
    And as the numerous videos of the accident clearly show.

    Cheers

    Paul
    Last edited by Bradburger; 7th March 2017 at 18:57.
    The most usless commodity in aerobatics is the amount of sky above you!

  22. #202
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    I don't think there's any argument that it started and finished outside the aerodrome. The latter is patently obvious. But the bulk of the bent loop is plotted over the aerodrome itself.

    I have yet to see any evidence it wasn't.

    Moggy

  23. #203
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    Do some of you on here think that most of the loops, Barrel rolls, Bomb Bursts, Fast Passes and breaks toward the crowd (Reds) take place over the air field?

  24. #204
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    Looking at the image on page 45 of the report, the bent loop is shown wholly outside the airfield. In fact between Old Shoreham Road and the river? The impact point is before Old Shoreham Road, going west, so most of the loop must have been east of that, and clearly not over the airfield?

  25. #205
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluebird Mike View Post
    I would have thought that any current vintage jet operator would do better to keep their opinions to themselves at this juncture, and concentrate instead on making sure that their own aircraft can now meet the new safety requirements, rather than making comments online that are already stirring up further unhelpful speculation etc on forums.
    In defence of J W, he pretty much HAS kept his council, though he, of all people, would have a valid and accurate perspective on displaying Hunters, had he infact chosen to 'go public' on the whole issue.

    Far from being provocative, he was simply trying to put a lid on the generally ignorant and repetitive 'chatter' which had overtaken the Miss Demeanour facebook page.
    Last edited by Propstrike; 8th March 2017 at 23:45.

  26. #206
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    I'm not sure- a Hunter operator, claiming that parts of the AAIB report were 'clutching at straws'? Not good, in my book.

  27. #207
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    JW would have a subjective perspective, which is not always the same as an accurate one, and completely different from an objective one.

    Steve
    75-Stay alive, 76-Radio tricks, 77-Going to Heaven.

  28. #208
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    In defence of JW, I did wonder if the 'grasping at straws' comment refereed to the idea that AH confused the Hunter with a JP. In the report we are given all sorts of numbers, statistics and flight techniques for the Hunter, but very little except a couple of vague speeds and altitudes which are said to be consistent with the JP. I wondered how much of this was 'cherry picking' (JP pilots feel free to comment). I am quite sure that to loop a JP the use of flaps would be a not be an option. If so, at the start of the loop AH had set the aircraft up as Hunter.

    Steve
    75-Stay alive, 76-Radio tricks, 77-Going to Heaven.

  29. #209
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradleygolding View Post
    If so, at the start of the loop AH had set the aircraft up as Hunter.
    Regarding the whole possible type confusion by AH, the above is a very good point.

    Best regards;
    Steve

  30. #210
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    We are in the realms of guesswork now. I'd say there is a difference between an 'muscle memory' action and recall of a series of similar digits. But there is no reason my guess should be better than anyone else's

    Moggy
    "What you must remember" Flip said "is that nine-tenths of Cattermole's charm lies beneath the surface." Many agreed.

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