The Kegworth Air Disaster a few thoughts. Thinking of all those who lost their lives and the Agencies involved including RAF MRT.

Few will realise that after Lockerbie Tragedy in December 2018 a few weeks later on this day there was another Aircraft crash.

If you look you can see the ropes attached to the plane.

 

Again the RAF Mountain Rescue Teams Stafford and RAF Linton on Ouse/Leeming were on scene and I feel that few know of this.The great thing that this time lives were saved unlike at Lockerbie. !One can only imagine what was going through the teams minds as they arrived on scene! What were they coming into again?

The Kegworth air disaster occurred when British Midland Flight 92, a Boeing 737-400, crashed on to the embankment of the M1 motorway near Kegworth, Leicestershire, England. It crashed while attempting to make an emergency landing at East Midlands Airport on 8 January 1989.

Both RAF teams had been at Lockerbie and were heavily involved. There expertise was well used in ensuring the aircraft was secured by 250 foot ropes as it was on a steep embankment. Also the teams mountain rescue  stretchers and expertise were used inside the aircraft for casualty evacuation. Aircraft fuel made the embankment very slippy . There was confusion with the number of the casualties and the teams searched the steep embankments for survivors.  A human chain was formed to help clear debris.  One can only imagine the scene they encountered. I was at Lockerbie with the Mountain Rescue teams I doubt I could have coped at that time.  What a great job they all did as did all the Agencies and everyone who was involved. One casualty with severe injuries took several hours to evacuate from the aircraft due to his injuries and by mountain rescue stretcher, There were many unsung heroes that day.

 

 

 

 

This photo shows the Mountain Rescue Bell Stretcher and various emergency services including the RAF Mountain Rescue Teams stretcher and team members assisting with casualty evacuation.

It was a tragic event  sadly there were a huge number of deaths: 47. Yet there were 78 Survivors. 

Pete Winn – Team Leader RAF Stafford

“I seem to remember Jimmy put the ropes on the fuselage. The embankment became a mixture of mud and aviation fuel.” A few of the team members involved are speaking about it this is after 30 years.

Steve Roberts

“Yep two weeks after Lockerbie we were in action again. Here is a newspaper cutting from the old scrap book above the AA man is Hank Marvin, above him Kev Turvey, then me, John Musgrave and Pete Winn. 30 years ago wow!

Steve Roberts

“note the Bell stretcher we used as the casualties were slipping off the canvass GS Stretchers because of the angle of the fuselage.

Civilian fire services had tried to tie it down but tied to the (aircraft) skin and not the air frame so totally ineffective sadly. If we hadn’t done it properly before committing troops to the inside of the wreckage it could have slid down the embankment wiping out all the services parked below it on the hard shoulder – good call by Team Leader Pete Winn.”

There must be many more stories but the Teams did a great job. Sadly I always felt they got little recognition at the time. Without a doubt there experience their rope work and casualty evacuation skills inside the aircraft made this a tremendous effort by all.

As the years go by many stories will be lost if the troops do not speak and write about them. What a great effort by all and as always the Teams did a superb job.

I wonder how many knew about this ?

 

If you wish to share your story please get in touch and I understand it cannot be easy but your skills that day saved lives along with the other emergency services. Now there is a story worth telling.

Thank you all involved, you are all incredible people. Please  comments welcome !

David Mitchell

“Stafford troops did us all proud. We pitched up, Leeming/Linton, a short while after them and straight into searching surrounding fields/embankments for possible survivors. Clicked straight into the routine of a few weeks previously. Darkness, noise & confusion; it is difficult to describe the trepidation of maintaining a disciplined search whilst not knowing what may/may not be revealed. Troops, as always, cracked on and did everything asked of them.”

 

About heavywhalley.MBE

After dinner speaker Lecturer and Mountain Rescue Specialist. Environmentalist. Spent 36 years with RAF Mountain Rescue and 4 years with a civilian Team . Still an active Mountaineer and loves the wild places.
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