PICTURES: Victor bomber accidentally becomes airborne during taxi demo

London
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UK air accident specialists are not intending to investigate an unusual incident at an air show during which a Handley Page Victor bomber unexpectedly became airborne during a high-speed taxi demonstration.

The incident occurred during the Cold War Jets Open Day at the Bruntingthorpe airfield, south of Leicester, the scene of the recent restoration to flight of an Avro Vulcan.

Bruntingthorpe's Victor, XM715, had been participating in the 3 May event when it became briefly airborne, apparently reaching a height - based on photographic evidence - of at least 20-30ft.

Circumstances of the incident are unclear. There are no confirmed details of the speed of the aircraft, the crew complement, or meteorological conditions, nor has it been confirmed whether the aircraft sustained any damage.

hp victor xm715

hp victor xm715

But while the Air Accidents Investigation Branch says it is "aware" of the incident, it is not conducting an inquiry. The Civil Aviation Authority has so far been unable to comment further, pending clarification of the incident, but says the aircraft is not on the civil register.

Bruntingthorpe's Cold War Jets event involves fast taxiing of several vintage aircraft including the de Havilland Comet, English Electric Lightning and Hawker Siddeley Buccaneer.

First flown in 1952 the Victor was, alongside the Vulcan and the Vickers Valiant, part of the Royal Air Force's nuclear deterrent 'V-bomber' fleet.