Pilots involved in Dunkeswell plane crash were 'unaware of each other', investigation finds

One of the planes landed on top of the other. Credit: Air Accidents Investigation Branch

A crash involving two vintage aircrafts in East Devon that left one person seriously injured was due to neither pilot being aware of each other, an investigation has found.

On 20 August last year, a 66-year-old pilot was seriously injured after two planes crashed at Dunkeswell Aerodrome.

On approach to the runway one of the planes landed on top of the other at around 1.30pm.

The pilot of the 1959 Cessna G-OMAG said he heard and felt what seemed like an "explosion" and remembers that the cockpit was filled with debris from shattered windshield, shards of metal and splintered wood. He was left seriously injured.

Picture shows position of both planes shortly before the crash Credit: Air Accident Investigation Branch

The second pilot, 72, who was flying a Boeing Stearman A75N1 said that the landing "didn’t feel right" and the aircraft was not responding to control inputs.

He applied power to correct what he felt was a drift to the left, then reduced power to idle. The aircraft continued to swing further to the left, off the runway and onto the grass.

The pilot believed that the left landing gear had failed. Once the aircraft stopped, he looked down and saw that his aircraft was straddled on top of another aircraft, the Cessna.

An investigation by the Air Accidents Investigations Branch found that neither pilot saw the other aircraft, nor were they alerted by radio transmissions until late on the final approach.