Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
#1827270
For those who haven't seen today's (18 Feb) AAIB report on the drone incident a Goodwood in 2019, you can read about it here.

In summary:

The Airspeeder pilot lost control and an emergency kill switch was operated but had no effect. The drone then climbed to approximately 8,000ft, entered controlled airspace at a holding point for flights arriving at Gatwick Airport, before its battery depleted and it fell to the ground. It crashed in a field of crops approximately 40m from occupied houses and 700m outside of its designated operating area. There were no injuries.

:shock:
#1827277
Good grief!
The control system and electronics are a complete mess and look like (are) standard hobby parts you get on ebay cobbled together by a bunch of amateur amateurs.
Anyone with slightest clue would have see that wasn't safe to fly.
Incredible.
#1827288
The most worrying thing for me is what the report says about the CAA UAS Unit. They were willing to grant an exemption for this device on the basis of what appears to be some quite limited experience and pretty cursory information. The Unit granted the exemption after raising a number of issues but never inspected the drones. Nor did they pursue getting data from CASA after an initial refusal. Also their exemption was wrongly worded...

And I've only got to page 19 of 65!

I'm sure Genghis will have a view on this (if he hasn't hit his head too hard on the wall). I hope I'm not being unduly hard on them. If the CAA is taking various functions for GA back into UK control, I just hope that it is better than this.
#1827294
There appears to be a strong case for an organisation the equivalent to LAA/BMAA etc that would provide engineering oversight and inspection for UAS. Responsible to the CAA and charging a commercial rate to provide the service.

Issuance of a permit to fly should be a precondition of application for BVLOS trials etc which would ensure the system could be operated safely and integrated with other airspace users without exposing the airspace users and the general public to potential harm.

This would then free the CAA to carry out the regulatory oversight to which they are probably better suited.
#1827353
map5623 wrote:Are those that are applying for the Goodwood UAS ACP any more professional/amateur?


One might hope so- however, Skyports have been reluctant to answer, in any meaningful detail, questions regarding vehicle flight performance and communication system failsafes with regard to the Oban/Mull operation.
#1827355
It would be hoped given the damning findings of this report that all drone activity in the U.K. be suspended until all the findings of the report are acted upon.The overflown public and aviators in aircraft operated responsibly and to recognised airworthiness and safety standards should expect nothing less.But of course this countries bizarre manifestation of a safety regulator is yet again demonstrated to be unqualified and incompetent in its role!How much longer must we and the travelling public be subjected to this self serving circus!
Fly safe because they do not! Stampe
Hawkwind liked this
#1827357
That's like saying that all GA should be suspended because one idiot decided to fly his PC12 to Valley for a paddle.

Obviously all those private pilots are cowboys - there's the evidence. Stands to reason.

@felixflyer is correct here.
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By Sooty25
#1827359
FLYER Jonny wrote:It crashed in a field of crops approximately 40m from occupied houses and 700m outside of its designated operating area. There were no injuries.


Should we all play, "lets guess where the Airbus that could have hit it, would have ended up?"
#1827377
Anyone keep track of all of the things in the report which were actively wrong?

They said their aircraft was subject to CASA inspection - when it wasn't and had never been inspected. it appears that they re-used much of their safety case from a much more complex drone, which didn't apply to this one [law broken].
They used one illegal radio frequency [law broken], and a second at a fraction of the power mentioned in their document, lower power then they were allowed to as it was on the wrong setting (so they appear to have had no real idea on radio reception range). To they used 10mW power, were allowed to use 25mW power but had never tested it at less than 1000mW power before. Their safety case on radio reception / failures / range / power was simply wrong. They didn't test the range of the control inside the UAV (only the control box on its own) and didn't test the kill switch range at all.
Their safety case on people with kill switches didn't match what they did (every spotter vs a single spotter).
They had fuel bowsers and parked aircraft within their safety buffer zone (in contravention of their safety case - which means law broken)
Spotters in incorrect locations, so no way for pilot to be warned if within buffer zone (which he was on a number of passes before control was lost) [law broken].
They operated faster than their exception allowed [law broken]
Altitude telemetry and battery monitoring systems were required but not installed [law broken]
Their safety case said there was multiple redundancy in motors and flight control systems: there were none [law broken].
Their safety case said that fly away was mitigated by GPS based return to home system: This was not installed [law broken].
Their description of the flight control system was that if radio control was lost, it would lose altitude gradually and crash land. This was clearly wrong, as it kept the previous power setting.
The kill switch failure mode was to keep the system running - it should have killed the system.
They didn't MOR their previous hard landing [law broken]
They were late in submitting the subject flight failure then said the one that was submitted wasn't accurate [law broken]
They didn't check the drone was working (flight control checks) when they started it, as per their safety case.

Separately, I see the AAIB note that "13,800 UAs that have landed in an uncontrolled manner or crashed". Does that mean that the AAIB should have been informed of 13,800 accidents?
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#1827383
Dave W wrote:That's like saying that all GA should be suspended because one idiot decided to fly his PC12 to Valley for a paddle.

Obviously all those private pilots are cowboys - there's the evidence. Stands to reason.

@felixflyer is correct here.


Is he?

Let's await developments and await the prosecution of the operator. If people are being taken to task for leaving an ATZ for not reporting their height when leaving it it stands to reason that there will be some follow up here.

One thing is clear though, we understand and appreciate that these things need their own bit of purple airspace when operating......

Maybe the issuance and hard hats to those below should be mandated too.
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#1827389
Dave W wrote:That's like saying that all GA should be suspended because one idiot decided to fly his PC12 to Valley for a paddle.

I'm not so sure it is a good analogy, Dave. I read @Stampe's desire to suspend operations as due to the failings of the CAA, rather than being an attack on all UAV manufacturers/operators?

Let's face it, if pilots who have been flying quite safely for many a year are suddenly grounded as a consequence of a failure in admin in the 'licensing dept' :wink: , then surely it's not unreasonable to suspend introduction of a relatively new technology until the overseer has the competence to ensure safe operation? :wink:

IMO the apparent ease of pulling the wool over their eyes in terms of airspace application procedures is also an indication of a lack in competence within.

Whether grounding all UAVs meanwhile is desired/necessary, I'm not sufficiently knowledgable to say. :D
Flyin'Dutch', GrahamB, Hawkwind and 1 others liked this