Archive | October, 2008

Set up for it

The UK coroner’s report on the deaths of ten RAF servicemen in a Lockheed Martin C-130K Hercules XV179 over Iraq in January 2005 has confirmed that they died as a result of “serious systemic failures” by the Ministry of Defence. Ground fire, including small arms fire, caused a fuel tank explosion that blew off the outboard 7m of […]

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Helicopters need help

That headline may sound patronising, but it’s not intended to be. Flying helicopters is difficult. The tasks they are asked to perform are those which no other transport mode could carry out. Helicopters are so expensive to operate they are only called out when nothing else can do the job. The Morecambe Bay report is one of the […]

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Taking crew qualifications seriously

Sorry to go on about what Flybe has been doing recently, but actually it’s important to the UK airline industry, and other European carriers could learn a trick or two as well. Europe’s largest regional carrier has just finished training 21 cabin crew, and the airline has won recognition under the UK’s national vocational qualifications system […]

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Airport security: why it makes grown men cry

It was at Heathrow Airport that I had a screwdriver confiscated. Okay, you might reasonably say. Unless you knew it was one of those minute devices for tightening the tiny hinge screws in a pair of reading spectacles. It was exactly an inch (24mm) long, plastic-handled, and the metal part measured about a quarter of an inch. […]

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