BAE Systems aid probe into Royal Navy Hawk jet crash

BAE Systems is helping with an investigation after a Royal Navy Hawk jet crashed.

Friday, 26th March 2021, 9:06 am
Updated Friday, 26th March 2021, 9:08 am
A helicopter at the scene of the crash

Two pilots are in a stable condition in hospital after the jet crashed in woodland during a training exercise, leading to the Ministry of Defence temporarily grounding the aircraft pending an investigation.

The crew from the 736 Naval Air Squadron based at RNAS Culdrose at Helston, Cornwall, ejected from the jet during the incident on Thursday morning.

The two-seater Hawk T1, which is the same model of jet as used by the Red Arrows, is manufactured at BAE Systems in Lancashire and exported all over the world..

The Hawk is used by the Red Arrows

It crashed in woodland in the St Martin area near Helston during a training exercise.

All Hawk T1 aircraft across the services have been temporarily “paused” amid an investigation into the incident, according to the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

A spokeswoman said in a statement: “Safety is our paramount concern. The RAF has decided to temporarily pause Hawk T1 operations, as a precautionary measure, while investigations are ongoing.

“We will continue to review the situation as further information becomes available.”

The pilots, who were found about half a mile from the main crash site having safely ejected, remain in a stable condition “without significant injury”, Devon and Cornwall Police said.

The force said the crew were treated at the scene after ejecting and were then flown by air ambulance to Derriford Hospital in Plymouth.

A BAE Systems spokesman said today: “Following the incident involving a Hawk T1 aircraft at RNAS Culdrose, Cornwall, on March 25, we can confirm we are supporting an investigation being conducted by the Air Accident Investigation Board.

"Any further enquiries should be directed to the UK Ministry of Defence."

Ejection seat manufacturer Martin-Baker said it was the first Royal Navy ejection in 18 years.

The company wrote on Facebook: “A Royal Navy Hawk aircraft from 736 Naval Air Squadron crashed this morning during a flight from RNAS Culdrose. Both pilots ejected successfully.

“This is the first Royal Navy ejection in 18 years with the last being Martin-Baker’s 7,000th ejection back in 2003.”