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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 168972
Last updated: 2 October 2019
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Date:20-AUG-2014
Time:19:33
Type:Silhouette image of generic PA38 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Piper PA-38-112 Tomahawk
Owner/operator:Airtime Aviation Holdings Ltd (regd. owner)
Registration: G-BNDE
C/n / msn: 38-79A0363
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Hedges Farm, Near Padbury Brook, Buckinghamshire -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Nature:Private
Departure airport:White Waltham, Maidenhead, Berkshire (EGLM)
Destination airport:Elstree, Hertfordshire (EGTR)
Narrative:
A man has been killed in a light aircraft crash near Buckingham. Thames Valley Police said the aircraft was found at Hedges Farm, off London Road, north of Padbury, shortly after 19:40 BST on Wednesday, and officers were still at the scene on Thursday.

The man, aged in his 60s, and the only person on board, died at the scene. No one on the ground was hurt. The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) confirmed it had begun an investigation.

UPDATE: The following is an extract from the official AAIB investrigation...

"The pilot took off from White Waltham at 1708 hrs and headed in a northerly direction. South of Buckingham he started flying in an approximately circular pattern with a 2 to 3 nautical mile radius and continued for almost an hour, remaining between 2,500 feet and 4,700 feet amsl (the base of controlled Class A airspace in the area is 5,500 feet amsl). During this time the pilot made a number of calls on his mobile telephone.

At 18:31 hours the pilot attempted to make a telephone call to a relative but it did not connect. Twenty-five seconds later a text message was sent to the same relative, stating that control of the aircraft had been lost and it was “going down”. Some two minutes later, the pilot broadcast a MAYDAY call on the Farnborough Radar North frequency, stating that the aircraft had gone into a spin. Farnborough responded to the MAYDAY call but the reply crossed with a further communication from the pilot, giving his position and ending abruptly.

A number of witnesses near Padbury saw the aircraft descend rapidly, spinning or spiralling until it went out of view. The subsequent impact with the ground destroyed the aircraft and the pilot sustained fatal injuries".

Press reports, in the light of the AAIB report in the accident, speculated on whether or not the crash was an incident of "suicide by 'plane", but it cannot be proved either way that the fatal spin was or was not intentional of if the pilot was simply distracted by trying to fly whilst using his mobile 'phone at the same time.

Sources:

1. https://assets.digital.cabinet-office.gov.uk/media/55252ee3e5274a141b000001/Piper_PA-38-112_Tomahawk_G-BNDE_04-15.pdf
2. http://www.buckinghamtoday.co.uk/news/more-news/updated-person-dies-following-plane-crash-1-6251741
3. http://www.bucksherald.co.uk/news/more-news/latest-update-man-dies-in-plane-crash-1-6251741
4. http://www.buckinghamtoday.co.uk/news/more-news/plane-crash-victim-is-named-1-6256952
5. https://forums.flyer.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=91156&sid=d8f41abaab6dbee3042a203fed013587
6. https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/x-factor-girls-fraudster-father-killed-in-buckinghamshire-plane-crash-9698720.html_
7. http://www.caa.co.uk/aircraft-registration/
8. Piper G-BNDE on 16 April 2014: https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/view/1451400/


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
21-Aug-2014 02:34 Geno Added
21-Aug-2014 06:19 Anon. Updated [Aircraft type]
21-Aug-2014 07:03 gerard57 Updated [Operator, Nature, Damage]
21-Aug-2014 11:06 gerard57 Updated [Total occupants, Source, Narrative]
21-Aug-2014 16:31 Crispy Updated [Registration, Cn]
21-Aug-2014 16:40 harro Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Narrative]
25-Aug-2014 04:01 Aerossurance Updated [Time, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
08-Sep-2014 02:02 Dr. John Smith Updated [Registration, Operator, Location, Phase, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Damage, Narrative]
19-Apr-2015 15:57 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Location, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
19-Apr-2015 15:58 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]
12-Feb-2016 00:24 Dr.John Smith Updated [Embed code]

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