Shoreham Airshow crash trial

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Reds Rolling
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Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by Reds Rolling »

The trial of Andy Hill has begun.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/topics/cq8r53p1rpgt/shoreham-airshow-crash-trial


(Mods: I did try and find the original Shoreham thread but was unable to find it so started this one.)

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Abbo46
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by Abbo46 »

Believe the original thread was deleted, for some reason.

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CJS
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by CJS »

For myriad reasons I think.
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

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Dan O'Hagan
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by Dan O'Hagan »

I think until the case is over and a verdict has been reached, comment should stay off the forum. The trial is active, and we don’t want to prejudice it.

MiG_Eater
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by MiG_Eater »

I wholeheartedly agree with Dan on that.

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Abbo46
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by Abbo46 »

Couldn't agree more. :up:

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boff180
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by boff180 »

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-47495885

Pilot Andrew Hill has been found not guilty of manslaughter over the Shoreham Airshow crash, in which 11 people died.

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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by MiG_Eater »

So if not Andy Hill, who gets the blame? If, indeed, it is decided there is any to apportion.

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speedbird2639
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by speedbird2639 »

Clearly the jury felt the 11 deceased were to blame for quietly going about their legal business on that day. Ridiculous verdict. Fully expect a class action appeal from the families of the deceased and a retrial. I would be interested to hear from the jury as to what they do consider manslaughter if, in their opinion, one of the most open and shut cases in recent history isn't.

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boff180
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by boff180 »

MiG_Eater wrote:So if not Andy Hill, who gets the blame? If, indeed, it is decided there is any to apportion.


The AAIB have put the majority of the blame at his feet in their official report, what the Courts have said (and I can't fathom without reading the reasoning) is that it is was however, not manslaughter or reckless endangerment of an aircraft.

AAIB wrote:The investigation identified the following causal factors in the accident:
  • The aircraft did not achieve sufficient height at the apex of the accident manoeuvre to complete it before impacting the ground because the combination of low entry speed and low engine thrust in the upward half of the manoeuvre was insufficient.
  • An escape manoeuvre was not carried out, despite the aircraft not achieving the required minimum apex height.

The following contributory factors were identified:
  • The pilot either did not perceive that an escape manoeuvre was necessary, or did not realise that one was possible at the speed achieved at the apex of the manoeuvre.
  • The pilot had not received formal training to escape from the accident manoeuvre in a Hunter and had not had his competence to do so assessed.
  • The pilot had not practised the technique for escaping from the accident manoeuvre in a Hunter, and did not know the minimum speed from which an escape manoeuvre could be carried out successfully.
  • A change of ground track during the manoeuvre positioned the aircraft further east than planned producing an exit track along the A27 dual carriageway.
  • The manoeuvre took place above an area occupied by the public over which the organisers of the flying display had no control.
  • The severity of the outcome was due to the absence of provisions to mitigate the effects of an aircraft crashing in an area outside the control of the organisers of the flying display.


Thoughtful_Flyer
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by Thoughtful_Flyer »

MiG_Eater wrote:So if not Andy Hill, who gets the blame? If, indeed, it is decided there is any to apportion.


Nobody I hope! You cannot eliminate all risk from any aviation activity. Although there was a tragic outcome that doesn't, in itself, mean that anybody was to blame.

It is perfectly possible to have a situation when one or more individuals behaved totally recklessly but the aircraft ended up crashing into open ground injuring no one. Equally, everybody could have done everything "by the book" yet innocent people come to grief.

Although I am in no doubt whatsoever this was the correct outcome, it may well have more implications for the airshow "scene" than if the poor pilot had been hung out to dry.

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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by Thoughtful_Flyer »

speedbird2639 wrote:Clearly the jury felt the 11 deceased were to blame for quietly going about their legal business on that day. Ridiculous verdict. Fully expect a class action appeal from the families of the deceased and a retrial. I would be interested to hear from the jury as to what they do consider manslaughter if, in their opinion, one of the most open and shut cases in recent history isn't.


Utter nonsense!

Plus, there cannot be a "retrial" unless compelling new evidence, that was not previously available, comes to light. But don't let the rules of law get in the way of your obvious prejudice!

There may potentially be civil claims to be made where the standard of proof is far lower, that is another matter.

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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by MiG_Eater »

Thoughtful_Flyer wrote:
MiG_Eater wrote:So if not Andy Hill, who gets the blame? If, indeed, it is decided there is any to apportion.


Nobody I hope! You cannot eliminate all risk from any aviation activity. Although there was a tragic outcome that doesn't, in itself, mean that anybody was to blame.

It is perfectly possible to have a situation when one or more individuals behaved totally recklessly but the aircraft ended up crashing into open ground injuring no one. Equally, everybody could have done everything "by the book" yet innocent people come to grief.

Although I am in no doubt whatsoever this was the correct outcome, it may well have more implications for the airshow "scene" than if the poor pilot had been hung out to dry.


I couldn't agree with you more on your first statement. Understanding and working with risk is probably the most important aspect of having an enjoyable life (and therefore, enjoyable airshows) - however, it seems obvious to me that this tragic outcome was down to several compounding reckless decisions which were, at the time, breaking pre-agreed rules.

My fear is that had Andy been given responsibility for the deaths, people would understand that this sort of thing is absolutely not normal at an airshow. Now that it has been said publicly that, in essence, he is totally innocent - it suggests that this is perhaps the result of ordinary airshow activities.

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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by ArabJazzie »

speedbird2639 wrote:Clearly the jury felt the 11 deceased were to blame for quietly going about their legal business on that day. Ridiculous verdict. Fully expect a class action appeal from the families of the deceased and a retrial. I would be interested to hear from the jury as to what they do consider manslaughter if, in their opinion, one of the most open and shut cases in recent history isn't.


Wow! How can you come to that conclusion without seeing the transcripts from the trial?

boff180 wrote:
MiG_Eater wrote:So if not Andy Hill, who gets the blame? If, indeed, it is decided there is any to apportion.


The AAIB have put the majority of the blame at his feet in their official report, what the Courts have said (and I can't fathom without reading the reasoning) is that it is was however, not manslaughter or reckless endangerment of an aircraft.

AAIB wrote:The investigation identified the following causal factors in the accident:
  • The aircraft did not achieve sufficient height at the apex of the accident manoeuvre to complete it before impacting the ground because the combination of low entry speed and low engine thrust in the upward half of the manoeuvre was insufficient.
  • An escape manoeuvre was not carried out, despite the aircraft not achieving the required minimum apex height.

The following contributory factors were identified:
  • The pilot either did not perceive that an escape manoeuvre was necessary, or did not realise that one was possible at the speed achieved at the apex of the manoeuvre.
  • The pilot had not received formal training to escape from the accident manoeuvre in a Hunter and had not had his competence to do so assessed.
  • The pilot had not practised the technique for escaping from the accident manoeuvre in a Hunter, and did not know the minimum speed from which an escape manoeuvre could be carried out successfully.
  • A change of ground track during the manoeuvre positioned the aircraft further east than planned producing an exit track along the A27 dual carriageway.
  • The manoeuvre took place above an area occupied by the public over which the organisers of the flying display had no control.
  • The severity of the outcome was due to the absence of provisions to mitigate the effects of an aircraft crashing in an area outside the control of the organisers of the flying display.


The last point for me would be a major factor in reducing the blame attributed to the pilot.
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by 106500 »

There's one thing for certain, airshows won't be the same again - classic jet flying will continue to be decimated in my opinion and in fact the verdict might be viewed by the CAA as vires for invoking even more restrictions on display flight?

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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by MiG_Eater »

I have always wondered if the CAA see airshows as nothing more than an annoyance (no evidence to back this up... a genuine wonder), and my fear is that this accident is the excuse needed to make airshows so onerous to stage as to be almost impossible.

There are no winners in this - and even if Andy Hill had been hung out to dry, it wouldn't necessarily have made anything better for any of the victims, or for airshows in the future.

It's a very, very sad case - whether you consider it from the utterly tragic perspective of those killed, or their families; or if you see the devastating impact on what it has done to the hobby that we all truly love.

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harkins
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by harkins »

I feel this quote from a relative of one of the deceased sums up the verdict

"Why are we allowing any form of aerobatics to be performed when there is now doubt concerning any pilot's ability to avoid becoming cognitively impaired from the normal G forces that will be experienced during an aerobatic display?

I don't know what the repercussions of this trial will be, but I think it's quite possible that airshows in the UK are all but finished. Certainly beyond the last two military ones at least. And they're dying on their arses anyway.

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JJC
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by JJC »

The correct verdict returned here.

The CPS decision to proceed with this prosecution was always dubious to say the least, from my point of view, and it was always clear that the offences were not made out which means it should never have proceeded in the first place. This case is a prime example of how pandering to public outrage and knee-jerk, often ill-informed opinions leads to poor prosecution decision making.

This was a view shared by the solicitors in the criminal defence firm I work for. But don’t let that get in the way of faux outrage and the dangerous, inflammatory and uninformed opinions of rag-writers.

As to the opinions of the relatives of the deceased, they’re just that. Opinions. Understandably emotionally charged and influenced by the tragic loss of their loved ones, but a layman’s opinion is of questionable use in determining how displays should be flown in future. Just my 2 cents.
Last edited by JJC on Fri 08 Mar 2019, 12:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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bigfatron
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by bigfatron »

boff180 wrote:The AAIB have put the majority of the blame at his feet in their official report, what the Courts have said (and I can't fathom without reading the reasoning) is that it is was however, not manslaughter or reckless endangerment of an aircraft.


Yes, I read it too that its possible that the AAIB findings and the courts can both be correct. Although then if its not Andy Hill then (assuming none of the shortcomings in the AAIB report attributable to the pilot are in themselves criminal) the inference is surely that 'the system' has failed? So as others have said, the effects from this on display flying could be extremely significant.

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harkins
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by harkins »

I expect that all parties involved now will surely be all the more cautious though. Especially councils, insurers and law enforcement. Laymen will probably have as much influence as experts will in the future of airshows and it's not difficult to envisage more and more hurdles being put in front of air displays. Air displays today are a very rare breed anyway, but now I feel they're also somewhat endangered too. But the verdict doesn't really change a lot there as that was the case as soon as the Hunter ploughed into the ground and killed 11 people.

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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by tankbuster »

MiG_Eater wrote:[Now that it has been said publicly that, in essence, he is totally innocent - it suggests that this is perhaps the result of ordinary airshow activities.


It hasn't been said that he is totally innocent just that he is not guilty of manslaughter which is totally different
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by MiG_Eater »

I agree it is totally different Tankbuster - but the fact remains that if you believe these people have been killed due to negligence, and it has been publicly stated that the pilot was not the cause - it then logically follows that the airshow itself was the guilty party. This would be a horrendous thing if it were to become general public opinion.

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mavvymoo
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by mavvymoo »

Lifted from another forum....

I think it's important here to bear in mind what this means. This was a criminal trial, to the criminal standard of proof ('beyond reasonable doubt') and to the test used for gross negligence manslaughter, i.e. that the defendant was not just negligent but fell far below the standard expected of someone in his position. No doubt the judge will have directed the jury in terms similar to those approved by the Court of Appeal in the 2016 case R (on the application of Oliver) v Director of Public Prosecution:

"A proper direction to the jury on the issue of gross negligence was held in that case to be that they should be sure that the conduct in question was something ‘truly exceptionally bad and which showed a departure from the standard to be expected’ so as to constitute the very serious crime of manslaughter. The bar is thus set high: perhaps unsurprisingly so, given that such cases ordinarily involve no criminal intent."

An acquittal means that the jury were not satisfied, beyond reasonable doubt, that the crash was caused by Hill's flying being so bad as to meet that test.


To my mind this means that the prosecution were unable to provide evidence to the jury that compelled them to believe that it put the case beyond reasonable doubt.

A surprising verdict nonetheless, but the pilot has of course to live with this for the rest of his days.
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Re: Shoreham Airshow crash trial

Post by Airshowhammer »

People make mistakes. Some people are going on like he intentionally flew straight into them and planned the whole thing like a terror attack. I seem to recall a Thunderbirds pilot years back doing a similar type of thing but from take off performing the loop way to early, ejecting and completely binning the F16, thankfully no one was hurt. Accidents happen and I do feel for the pilot, imagine being in his shoes?

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