BREAKING County News: Shoreham Air Show organisers did not know about pilot’s display plans before the tragedy

Shoreham air disaster SUS-150109-142623001

Shoreham air disaster SUS-150109-142623001

Organisers of the Shoreham Air Show were unaware of the pilot’s display plans, a report has concluded.

The Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) also said they failed to carry out a proper risk assessment.

Eleven people died in the tragedy on August 22 last year, including football player and former Portsmouth University student, 23-year-old Jacob Schilt.

The risk assessment did not ‘show the range of hazards presented by different display aircraft’, a report said.

The disaster happened when a Hawker Hunter plane crashed on to the A27 in West Sussex.

The AAIB published a special bulletin into the incident, which revealed there was ‘no evidence of an attempt to consider either a hierarchy of protection or control’.

The AAIB commissioned an agency of the Health and Safety Executive to review the air show’s risk assessment.

It found ‘a number of deficiencies compared to what would have been expected’, the AAIB stated.

The review added: ‘It is not clear that those who assessed the risks and recorded the assessment had a full understanding of the purpose of the risk assessment.’

Shoreham’s flying display director (FDD) was not aware of the sequence of manoeuvres that the Hawker Hunter pilot intended to perform, the AAIB found.

Without prior knowledge of the routine or the ground over which he would fly, it was not possible to identify specific hazards and which groups of people would be exposed to them, the report stated.

The FDD presented risk assessments to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to seek permission for two displays following the disaster that ‘were not materially different from that for Shoreham’, the AAIB said.

Investigators issued a safety recommendation calling for the CAA to ‘specify the safety management and other competencies’ that flying show organisers must demonstrate.

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