Monday, November 29, 2010

Shoreham Glider Crash

These pictures were captured by an amateur photographer watching the airshow from the crowd, and capture the last moments of the flight. Click on 'Read More' for more pictures and video.

Firstly, let me say that, despite the shocking damage to the aircraft, the pilot (Mike Newman) is expected to make a full recovery.

Mike is a member of the Swift Aerobatic Display Team and 2009 UK unlimited aerobatic gliding champion was performing at the Royal Air Forces Association Airshow at Shoreham in West Sussex.

This sequence of pictures shows the moment when the Swift S-1 aerobatic glider piloted by Mike Newman slammed into the runway following what appeared to be an aborted tow.

Eye witness accounts say that the cloud base was low and the sky was overcast at the time of the accident. The pilot had released the tow rope at a low level and was attempting to return to the runway when the glider appeared to drop it's nose and spin.

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) are investigating the incident, so it would be wrong to speculate further as to reasons for the crash. As a glider pilot and aviation enthusiast, I can only wish Mike well and be thankful that the accident wasn't much worse.

Swift Aerobatic Display team spokesman Guy Westgate was quoted as saying: 'Mike is in good spirits and the whole team wish him a speedy recovery.' I'm sure that we all add our best wishes as well.

Photographs were taken by Amateur photographer Rob Yuill, 62, of Hornchurch, Essex.

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