Mid-air collision halts model aircraft flying from Mill Hill

The collision happened as the light aircraft was coming in to land at Shoreham Airport
The collision happened as the light aircraft was coming in to land at Shoreham Airport

FLYING from Mill Hill has been suspended following a mid-air collision on Thursday.

Model aircraft pilots were asked to leave the Shoreham hillside by Sussex Police following the incident.

A model aircraft being flown from Mill Hill was in collision with a light aircraft at 1,000ft. The light aircraft was approaching Shoreham Airport and landed safely.

A spokesman for Sussex Police said: “We were called at 11.35am on Thursday, after a model airplane being flown from Mill Hill in Shoreham collided with a light aircraft near Shoreham Airport.

“No one was injured, although the light aircraft suffered some damage.

“Officers went to Mill Hill and spoke to a group of people who had been flying model aircraft from the site. The group stopped flying their vehicles and left the area.

“A notice has been put up at Mill Hill, telling the owners of model aircraft not to fly them from there while the Civil Aviation Authority decides whether it is safe for them to use the land.”

Sussex Radio Flying Club confirmed a police advisory notice had been placed at Mill Hill on Friday, prohibiting model flying.

A spokesman said: “Anyone intending or found flying there will have their equipment confiscated.

“Mill Hill is a public site with unpowered model use permitted up to 50ft over the top of the hill. Please do not use this site until further notice.”

The Civil Aviation Authority said on Tuesday that it was aware of the incident but it was being handled by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB), which is part of the Department of Transport.

An AAIB spokesperson confirmed: “The AAIB are investigating by correspondence.”

The model aircraft pilot was a member of the British Model Flying Association (BMFA).

The BMFA South East Area posted a message to members on Facebook stating that the head office had spoken to the member involved in the collisioin.

“The inquiry will take place, which may take some months, so until the outcome is known, we see there is no reason why we cannot continue to fly at Mil Hill.”