Posted on February 14, 2019
Shoreham Airshow Crash: Pilot Denies ‘Cavalier Attitude’ To Flying
The Hawker Hunter aircraft Andrew Hill was flying crashed in 2015, killing 11 people.
Andrew Hill, the pilot whose plane crashed during the 2015 Shoreham Airshow, killing 11 men, has dismissed claims he ever had a “cavalier attitude” to flying.
The 1950s Hawker Hunter fighter jet plunged to the ground and exploded in a fireball on the A27 in West Sussex after Hill attempted a loop on August 22.
Mr Hill, 54, of Sandon, Buntingford, Hertfordshire, denies 11 counts of manslaughter by gross negligence.
The trained Royal Air Force instructor, is on trial in the Old Bailey and was asked by his barrister, Karim Khalil QC, if he was ever a “cavalier” pilot.
“I would say I was probably one of the least people that applied to, in the sense that there are ways to be cavalier and some people are, some people are not,” Mr Hill replied.
“I believe I took a very structured, disciplined approach to it [display flying].”
He told the court that he sometimes held back from flights he was not comfortable with carrying out.
“We have our strengths and weaknesses,” he said.
Prosecutors previously told the court the crash was due to “pilot error” and although Mr Hill was normally considered “careful and competent”, he had taken “risks” in the past, suggesting he sometimes played “fast and loose” with the rules and may have had a “more cavalier attitude to safety than was appropriate”.
In relation to his final display, Mr Hill denied he ever intended to hurt anyone.
Mr Hill claims to have experienced “cognitive impairment” shortly before the crash and does not remember what happened.