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Speakers Corner


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Another Red Arrows incident


Al94
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morddwyd

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Seats are hairy things.

In the early days they killed, often on the ground, more than they saved.

Safety became such a watchword that it is now rare to hear of a ground incident.

Don't know the modern "seeing off" format, but in my day the seat was the last thing to have the safety devices removed before take off, and the first to be refitted on landing (except for rockets - we actually used to have to go out and connect/disconnect those on the end of the runway!).

We can only speculate, of course,but the first thing I would be looking at is were all safety devices in place, and if not why not.

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spuds

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There doesn't appear to be any news as to what caused the other recent Red Arrows incident, except to confirm that the pilot died of multiple injuries.

I wonder if this latest Red Arrows incident might throw further light on the cause of the other?.

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Woolwell

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spuds - These 2 accidents are probably unrelated. The Accident Investigation Team may have yet to report on the first tragic accident.

Another report of the latest accident Telegraph. I don't think that we should speculate any more about this. Accidents with ejection seats on the ground are bad and my thoughts are with the pilot's family.

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ams4127

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Many years ago, as a "liney" I was standing on the access ladder strapping a pilot into a Lightning T2. As he was bringing his hands back up after fastening his leg restraints, his glove caught on the lower seat firing handle (in those days seats had both upper and lower handles) and pulled it. There was a click. I looked at him. He looked at me.

Nothing was said....

I threw myself backwards off the ladder onto the tarmac some twelve feet below. To this day, I will swear on a stack of bibles that he was waiting on the ground when I landed!!

Even after all this time, we still remain friends.

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Al94

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Sadly now confirmed that the pilot has died.

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morddwyd

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"As he was bringing his hands back up after fastening his leg restraints, his glove caught on the lower seat firing handle (in those days seats had both upper and lower handles) and pulled it."

And that is why, as I'm sure you will recall, on that particular Mark of seat, and many others, you only took the pins out when all his straps were done up, and you were about to pat him on the head and remove the ladder!

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ams4127

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"And that is why, as I'm sure you will recall, on that particular Mark of seat, and many others, you only took the pins out when all his straps were done up, and you were about to pat him on the head and remove the ladder!"

And as you will remember, on an "ops" turnround and pilot change, shortcuts were common!

Four minutes maximum....refuel, check Firestreak, inspect A/C and fit brake 'chute. No1 engine left running during pilot change. No2 engine start during taxi. Best years of my life!!

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morddwyd

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Yep, did quite a few shortcuts myself, and have the "digs" and "evidence under caution" in my record to prove it, but can honestly say, hand on heart, I never shortcutted pins.

But of course, I was an armourer, and you always know which bits of your own kit need the most respect!

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flycatcher1

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Fifty Nine years ago we were very frightened of the " Bang Seat" . I know of some aircrew who flew with the Safety Pins still in with the vain hope that they could remove them in case of dire emergencies.

I remember that a seat was operated in a hangar years ago fortunately the technician managed to avoid going with it.

My views on Ejector Seats changed when I was crewed in an aircraft when only the two up front were safely seated.

My sympathy is with the Pilot and his family.

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johndrew

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The Hawk has a Mk 10 zero/zero seat which, theoretically, means a safe ejection stationary on the ground. There is only the seat pan operating handle for normal ejection and under standard procedures the pins fitted to this and the main gun sear would be left in place until after strap in.

From the pictures on TV, it looks as if the main gun fired successfully but whether the canopy cord, drogue gun and rocket pack fired I have no idea. Coming backwards, why the seat initiated is a total unknown, but for it to do so the main gun must have been operated in some way and even if the canopy cord failed the head pack (parachute) at the seat top should have penetrated before the pilot.

I know the canopy strut cable runs close to the main sear, but a plate was fitted with a fairlead/'P' clip to control this many years ago.

Another sad accident for which we shall need to await the findings of the investigation.

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