Royal Air Force Scotland

Royal Air Force – Scotland
3 July 2012
Tornado GR4T

On 3 July 2012, two Tornado GR4T aircraft of XV(Reserve) Squadron from RAF Lossiemouth collided over the Moray Firth while conducting separate training sorties. Three of the four crew on the two aircraft were killed and the surviving crew member received serious injuries.

The Military Aviation Authority Service Inquiry Final Report on the accident concluded that the cause of the accident was lack of recognition of converging flight paths, resulting in the controlled flight of both aircraft into the same airspace at the same time.

Using his RAF expertise of flying fast jet training sorties in Scotland, Jim Morris analysed the final report. Key contributing factors included:

  • The absence of an electronic planning (deconfliction) aid.
  • Ineffective flight authorisation.
  • Airmanship decisions that led to a descent without a radar service.
  • Meteorological conditions.
  • The lack of a Collision Warning System ("CWS") on Tornado GR4 aircraft.

The report made more than 50 recommendations which notably included the completion of the CWS for the Tornado, which was initially recommended for the aircraft in the 1990s.

A case was brought against the Ministry of Defence ("MOD") and the MOD accepted liability.

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