Maldon: Parachutes May Have Saved Lives

Two men killed in a light aircraft crash in Essex might have been saved if they had attempted to use their parachutes according to a new report.

Flying instructor Simon Hulme, 33, who was an RAF pilot from Cirencester in Gloucestershire, and his student, a 43-year-old man living in Holland, were killed when their YAK-52 went into an inverted spin, the report by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) said.

The aircraft went into a lake at Langford near Maldon during a formation flight on April 28 last year. 

It is not known which of the two men were handling the control at the time of the crash.

The report found that although both occupants wore parachutes, there was no evidence of an attempt to abandon the aircraft and had they attempted to do so when control was lost or shortly after fatalities may have been prevented. 

It was also found that the formation flying school involved has tightened safety procedures since their deaths.

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