Page last updated at 00:30 GMT, Tuesday, 20 October 2009 01:30 UK

Stunt caused fatal airshow crash

Brian Brown
Mr Brown was an experienced pilot(photo by Real Aeroplane Company)

A fatal crash at an airshow in West Sussex was probably caused by an unplanned manoeuvre by the World War II fighter plane's pilot, a report found.

Brian Brown, an experienced pilot from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, was flying the Hurricane when it crashed at Shoreham Airshow on 15 September 2007.

The Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB) report said Mr Brown had stated he would not be rolling the aircraft.

However, he did roll the privately-owned plane during a mock dogfight.

Although the aircraft's airspeed was adequate, the AAIB report said, its pitch meant it had insufficient height for the stunt to be completed safely.

No evidence of any defect or malfunction that would have contributed to the accident was found in the Hurricane, the report added.

Crash scene (Photo sent in by Raquel Rodriguez)
The Hurricane was taking part in a WWII re-enactment

It concluded the crash "probably occurred as a result of the pilot attempting an unplanned rolling manoeuvre" which had not been practised as part of the sequence.

The report recommended the sequence of manoeuvres should be clearly specified in advance of flying displays.

After the accident, Mr Brown's colleagues at the Real Aeroplane Company in Breighton, North Yorkshire, described him as "one of the most experienced Hurricane pilots in the country".

He had been flying the plane for 10 years and had amassed 400 hours' flying time.

Mr Brown had taken part in major air shows around Europe but was not originally due to fly at the event in Shoreham. He volunteered his services due to a shortage of available pilots.

His plane crashed into a field about one-mile north of the airshow.

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