Pre-Inquest Review Into Shoreham Air Show Crash Deaths

Lawyers representing family seek answers as to what caused the disaster

21.03.2016

Dave Grimshaw, Press Officer | 0114 274 4397

Specialist aviation lawyers at Irwin Mitchell representing families affected by Shoreham air show crash last August hope that the inquest process, which begins this month (March 22) with a pre-inquest review hearing, will provide answers as to exactly what caused the disaster.

Eleven people died and a number of others were left with serious injuries when a Hawker Hunter jet aircraft crashed into the westbound carriageway of the A27 on August 22 last year while taking part in an airshow near Shoreham Airport. The pilot also suffered serious injuries.

Expert aviation lawyers at Irwin Mitchell are representing both the families of people who died in the crash as well as people left seriously injured following the disaster.

Jim Morris, a former RAF pilot and a partner in the Irwin Mitchell aviation team, will be the advocate for families at the pre-inquest review hearing(s) and the inquest.  The first pre-inquest review hearing is being held at County Hall North in Horsham, West Sussex, on March 22 at 10am.

A Special Bulletin report into the crash released by the Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) last week revealed that the organisers of the air show were not aware of the pilot’s display routine and made 14 recommendations to improve the safety of airshows in future.

During the pre-inquest review hearing, senior coroner Penelope Schofield is expected to hear further updates from the AAIB, as well as Sussex Police. She will also explore the scope of the inquest and whether any further pre-inquest hearings will need to take place.

Expert Opinion
“This is likely to be a lengthy and complicated inquest and crucially it gives families the opportunity to put questions, themselves or through their legal representatives, to key witnesses involved in the tragedy and the investigation. We hope the inquest process will pull all relevant evidence together and provide a complete and detailed picture of the full chain of events that led to this this terrible disaster.

“We have heard from the AAIB’s recent Special Bulletin how the safety of air shows can be improved. The recommendations are welcomed but it is a matter of deep regret that it has taken the terrible loss of life at Shoreham before these recommendations, many of which are common sense, have been made.”

"The families want to understand the entirety of the safety precautions undertaken prior to the doomed flight of the Hawker Hunter aircraft at Shoreham on 22nd August, 2015. They also want to know exactly what improvements will be implemented by the authorities, so that they and the general public can be confident in the safety of future air shows.

“From the three Special Bulletin that have been published so far there are clear learning points from what happened at Shoreham which the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) must take into account. It is crucial that the safety recommendations are implemented into its policies and guidance as soon as possible.”
Jim Morris, Partner

Irwin Mitchell represents and is advising the families of people who were tragically killed as well as people who were injured in the Shoreham air crash. If you would like to speak in confidence to an expert regarding this accident, or any other aviation incident you were involved in, see our Shoreham Air Accident page for more information or alternatively our Air Accident Claims page.