Sunday 23rd August 2015

The British Air Display Association would like to react to the tragic accident that occurred in Shoreham on Saturday August 22nd and first of all to express our support and condolences for the families and friends of all those affected.

  • UK has long held an exemplary air display record in terms of public safety.
    • Prior to Saturday’s accident, the last time a member of the public was killed at a UK airshow was in 1952, nearly 63 years ago.
    • This record reflects the maturity of the multiple checks and balances that UK aviation regulators and airshow practitioners have developed.
  • The UK has extensive rules that cover airshow organisation, display aircraft heights, speeds and manoeuvres, flying supervision and a special examination and authorisation process for display pilots with graduated steps from simple flypasts to formation and aerobatics approvals.
    • In this regard, we are the envy of many other nations, not just in Europe but also across the Atlantic.
  • The Association will not speculate on how or why this particular accident occurred.
    • Some people might find that frustrating but at this stage even ‘informed’ speculation, without full knowledge of the facts, is unhelpful.
    • This is a time when careful analysis of the facts is needed before anyone tries to draw conclusions.
    • It is certainly not a time for un-informed or miss-informed rule making, especially when the existing rules have worked so well for so long.
  • Air Accident Investigation Branch experts will establish the facts, as quickly as possible.
    • Then will we will know whether this was a tragic one-off accident or whether there is more that can be done.
    • If there are lessons from this, that will be something for all involved in airshows to consider.
  • Our Association will continue to encourage, promote and advance Safety and Standards in British Air Displays.

About the British Air Display Association:

The British Air Display Association was formed in 2011 to consolidate a number of separate expert communities, each with their own expertise, involved in UK airshows.  The Association aims to foster the highest standards throughout UK air displays and arranges conferences before and after each summer’s flying display season a cohesive so that all those involved in UK air displays, whether military or civilian, sponsor, event organiser, aircraft owner, flying supervisor or display pilot can exchange ideas and learn together.     The conferences are held in conjunction and with the support of the Civil Aviation Authority and the Military Aviation Authority.  Other partners and affiliated organisations are the European Airshow Council, the Historic Aircraft Association and the Honourable Company of Air Pilots.