Public Inquiry ‘Only Way To Ensure Lessons Are Learned’ From Tornado Crash

Loved Ones Of Squadron Leader Killed In Tragedy Reiterate Call For Full Investigation


Lawyers representing families including the loved ones of an RAF Squadron Leader who died when two Tornado GR4s jets crashed off the coast of Scotland in 2012 have reiterated calls for a public inquiry into the incident, one year on from the release of the official accident report.

Three people including 36-year-old Squadron Leader Samuel Bailey, from Nottingham, died in the incident involving the aircraft from RAF Lossiemouth in July 2012.

An accident report by the Military Aviation Authority made available to authorities in November 2013 – but only made public in June this year – concluded that there were opportunities to prevent the incident and warned of failures to act on previous recommendations for collision warning systems to be installed in such aircraft.

Irwin Mitchell Scotland is representing the wife and daughter of Squadron Leader Bailey in relation to the incident and earlier this year secured confirmation from the Ministry of Defence’s (MoD’s) insurers that it had accepted responsibility for his death.

Now, one year on from when the accident report was first issued, the legal experts have reiterated demands for a full public inquiry to bring investigators, the MoD and other specialists together to examine the series of failings which occurred and to identify what can be done to prevent them from being repeated.

Squadron Leader Bailey’s wife, Fiona, 38, who was on duty on the base when the incident occurred, said: “The admission of liability from the MoD was a huge step forward for my daughter and me, but it remains very difficult to come to terms with what happened considering the series of failings that the accident report raised.

“There has been no suggestion that real lessons are being learned regarding the crash and we simply want to know why recommended steps were not taken which could have played a huge part in keeping Samuel safe. The same mistakes cannot be made again.”