Hawker Hunter T7, G-BVGH
During the latter stages of take off from Exeter Airport, the aircraft swung sharply to the right. Application of left brake and rudder failed to correct the swing; the takeoff was aborted but the aircraft departed the runway to the right. During the deceleration, the right main landing gear failed, which allowed the right external fuel tank to hit the ground and burst. The pilot shut down the engine before the aircraft came to a halt. There was no fire and both the pilot and the passenger escaped unhurt. The cause of the accident was traced to a failure within the wheel brakes selector unit, which allowed pressure to be continuously applied to the right brake unit during the takeoff run. The heat consequently generated, resulted in the right brake unit’s seizure, causing the aircraft to swing uncontrollably.
Published 10 December 2014