RAF Phenom air collision

On July 3, two Phenom T1 aircraft, ZM335 and ZM336, collided during a practice session in preparation for the RAF’s 100th anniversary flypast over London the following week, on July 10. The two aircraft had taken of from RAF Waddington, Lincolnshire, but as a result of the accident landed back at Waddington shortly after. AIR International contacted RAF Cranwell and Ainity Flight Training Services, the commercial contractor supplying and maintaining three leets of aircraft within the UK Military Flying Training System, including the five Phenom T1 aircraft, serial numbers ZM333, ZM334, ZM335, ZM336 and ZM337, based at Cranwell: no responses were received. AIR International then submitted a freedom of information request to the MoD and received the following reply from RAF Air Command’s Secretariat at High Wycombe on September 13.

“On July 3, 2018, the wingtips of two Phenom aircraft came into contact with each other, sufering relatively minor damage to the wings, with one aircraft also sufering some fuselage damage. Neither aircraft sufered Category 5 damage. One aircraft is due to be lown to RAF Cranwell for minor repairs prior to a full return to flying duty. The second aircraft is subject to further assessment before a recovery plan can be put in place. Both aircraft are insured by Ainity, who provide them under a contract to the MOD, although the MOD may be liable for an excess on the insurance, dependent on the amount of damage.

“There has been no impact on student training as the training programme is still in the development ‘test and adjust’ stage and full aircraft availability is not yet required. However, under the terms of the contract, Ainity can provide replacement aircraft if necessary.

“An occurrence safety investigation into the incident is ongoing and it would be inappropriate to comment further until it is completed.”

The response answered all but one of AIR International’s questions; the missing answer is understandable, because it is associated with the ongoing investigation. As of September 13, Phenom T1 ZM336 was still parked at RAF Waddington.