HC Deb 01 December 1937 vol 329 c2062
53. Mr. McEntee

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Air whether he can make any statement in regard to the three light bomber-type airplanes of the Oxfordshire squadron which crashed during the flight to Penrhos on Monday, 29th November, when one pilot was killed and two injured; how many airplanes were engaged in the flight; what types of machines crashed; and whether he is satisfied that the construction of the machines concerned was not at fault?

Lieut.-Colonel Muirhead

The facts, so far as are at present known, are these: Eighteen aircraft took off from No. 2 Flying Training School, Brize Norton, on 29th November last to fly to Penrhos. Bad weather was experienced during the later stages of the flight. One of the aircraft returned to Brize Norton, To landed at Sealand, four landed at Penrhos, and three crashed. Two of the aircraft that crashed were Audax and one a Hart. The preliminary investigations so far carried out have not disclosed any failure in the construction of the machines.

Mr. McEntee

In view of the very high proportion of the 18 setting out that failed to reach their destination, is any public inquiry being held with regard to the causes of the failure?

Lieut.-Colonel Muirhead

There will be a court of inquiry, naturally, on the cause of the crashes. We shall then get a great deal more detail in this connection. At the moment, I have given the hon. Member all the information in our posesssion.