Day one of Steve Hislop inquiry focuses on RAF fighters

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The possibility that RAF fighter jets could have played a part in the death of Steve Hislop was raised during the first day of a fatal accident inquiry into his 2003 helicopter crash.

Two witnesses at the inquiry, which opened at Edinburgh’s Sheriff Court yesterday, reported hearing the two jets fly past only a matter of seconds after they heard Hislop’s helicopter going by.

Crucially, neither witness saw the jets, but each reported hearing the aircraft pass and then a loud bang, which one said reminded him of a sonic boom.

The RAF confirmed jets had been in the area, but stated at the time that they had passed the crash site 30 minutes after Hislop’s helicopter came down.

Nevertheless, the fact that the Ministry of Defence is represented at the inquiry is likely to fuel rumours that the jets were somehow involved in the accident.

Hislop was returning from his home town Hawick to Buckinghamshire on the day of the fatal helicopter crash.

His friend Andrew Brodie has previously dismissed claims the accident was due to pilot error, stating that Hislop was meticulous in planning of his flight.

The rider had complained of bad weather on the day of his crash, stating in a text message to a friend that he would likely be delayed as a result.

The inquiry is scheduled to last until Friday.

 

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Michael Carroll

By Michael Carroll