1986 Military Air Accident Investigation Report unactioned

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by ABrighter2006, Sep 2, 2009.

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  1. On Radio 4's Today Program this morning, there was a short article on a report produced in 1986 relating to the workings of the Air Accident Investigation Branch.

    From the Today website:

    Will no doubt be available on BBC iPlayer later.

    Main thrust of the broadcast was the MOD's refusal to implement recommendations.

    Interested to see the views of the "informed" as to whether actioning this report would (as per the broadcast) have saved lives on TELIC and HERRICK?

  2. Without doubt. (But I think the thread title is misleading, the report discussed Military Boards of Inquiry, covering all 3 Services, not the civilian AAIB).

    The current system (and this is not just applicable to aircraft) mainly concentrates on the final act that caused the accident.

    It does not get into the underlying problems, so (to use aircraft as an example) a reoccurrence may be prevented on that aircraft type, but perhaps not on others.

    What usually happens is that a fuller report follows later. Then we'll see MoD spin.
  3. Fair comment bakersfield on the thread title - have changed to indicate the distinction. Thanks.
  4. May have prevented two aircrew being smeared by their chain of command over the Mull of Kintyre crash, to divert attention from possible techical problems....
  5. That Mulligans Tyres crash was odd for more than one reason. One wonders if the MOD had decided to have a clearout of senior intelligence pers. Or was it just sheer stupidity to put them all in one vehicle. Even commercial companies dont send all senior staff somewhere on the same flight.
  6. As I thought, MoD offered up some plank called Kevin Jones. Even in the face of some pussy-foot questioning he was all spin and bollox. Another Ainsworth clone.

    He even had a dig at retired officers for not saying something while in service. But quite obviously something HAD been said, as Lord Trefgarne was persuaded to commission the report 20 odd years ago.

    The most telling bit was Lord Trefgarne supporting the thrust of the report, that senior officers were bringing undue influence to bear on the Board of Inquiry members. But I think the BBC missed a trick there, as the obvious link was to Mull of Kintyre, where the Reviewing Officers over-ruled the BOI; whereas they stuck to Nimrod and Hercules where the battle has been won.
  7. Kevan Jones - the sad excuse which is currently Veterans Minister.

    Says it all.

    I would guess that the BBC were keen to run this article as quickly as possible to gain the exclusivity of the report and for that reason did not research and report how this could have impacted the investigation into ZD576.

    It also begs the questions as to how different Computer Weekly's reporting on ZD576 would have been.
  8. AB2006

    Good post. I think you're probably right about the BBC.

    Shame that it takes a computer mag to fight the pilots' battle.
  9. bakersfield, I should have also commented on your "Nimrod and Hercules where the battle has been won" comment also. I understand from a trusted source that within the next couple of months, this may be at the front of the news agenda again.

    As for Computer Weekly's coverage of ZD576. Agree with the thrust of your comment, but without taking anything away from CW's in-depth reporting, it should not surprise us that technology journalists have a better understanding of battlefield failures, then those physically hands-on the kit.

    Paticular credit should go to Tony Collins who has worked incredibly hard to ensure that the issues were clear to readers.
  10. This was posted on pprune by John Blakeley. BBC were fully aware of Mull and had interviewed key players in the movement to clear the pilots. The Mull crash was compared to a Tornado crash with very different conclusions.
    I guess we have to wait for yet another change in Govt before the honourable thing is contemplated by another Sec Def. I don't think it was Angus Stickler's call not to include Mull, BBC perceive this cause has gone cold.

    "When Angus Stickler contacted me to say he was doing this piece I suggested that a comparison of the BoI outcome of two accidents that took place within just a few weeks of each other, namely the Chinook on the Mull and the Tornado in Glen Ogle would provide a perfect example of why Tench was so important in terms of fairness and justice – as well as in terms of learning the right lessons from every accident. This, in summary, is what I suggested to Angus:
    .... that a comparison of the final verdicts between the BoI for the Chinook (crashed Jun 94 ) and Glen Ogle Tornado (crashed Sep 94) verdicts by the same Senior Reviewing Officers (SROs) (made within a few days of each other) offered a classic example of the "failings" of the BoI system. In the case of the Chinook the SROs despite having no ADR or CVR data available, and ignoring the comments from the AAIB and the airworthiness doubts of their own flight test organisation at Boscombe Down, find "Gross Negligence". In the case of the Tornado there is “no doubt whatsoever” that the actions of the pilot (for indeterminate reasons) caused the crash with loss of crew and aircraft - yet in the extracts from the BoI in the public domain, the SROs find that any consideration of human failings would be "academic and fruitless". Why this major inconsistency of approach except perhaps to "protect" the system and RAF command chain from criticism in both cases. This is a classic example of why the BoI and indeed the military airworthiness authority should be removed from the Command chain and its potential self-serving influence! We did point this out some years ago with one of the members of the Mull Group sending a comparison letter to the S of S - without a response as far as I am aware.
    I understand that the BBC producer was reluctant to use these examples, as they took place so long ago – I can only say that the basis of the item, the Tench Report, was even earlier, and I am sad that what was a generally good piece of journalism did not, in my view, really get down to the wider issues and left itself open to be fairly easily rebuffed by an “economical with the truth” MOD, especially on a day when this was a long way down the news agenda as far the public would be concerned."

    Rumour about the Tornado crash has raged for years, I won't fan the flames here, but it is quite ridiculous that the two Chinook pilots took the full blame for the crash without sufficient supporting evidence.
  11. Slightly OT but I was wondering if anyone here could point me in the direction of any reports about a helicopter crash in the Falklands on 26th February 1987 in which my old mate Jeremy Marshall was killed. Apart from a couple of items on Hansard I've found very little information about it.
  12. Military Aircraft Accident Summaries

    Above is the link for the accident.
  13. Thank you very much for that link. I am in your debt. I had 'gone bush' in Australia at the time it happened, so I wasn't party to any news reports or the funeral/memorial service for Jerry.
    It has been very difficult for me to get closure on this, assuming that's ever possible. Thanks again.
  14. ABrighter 2006

    Thank you for the comment re explaining how the Chinook Mk2 of the type which crashed on the Mull of Kintyre had software which was shown by Boscombe Down to be potentially unsafe. It's remarkable how much was kept from the BOI. It's also remarkable that within days of the crash in 1994 journalists were getting informal briefings that the pilots were to blame. Possibly this highlights the importance of the Tench report.