CT155219 Hawk - From the Investigator

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Report / January 28, 2016 / Project number: CT155219 Hawk - C Category

Location: 4 Wing Cold Lake, Alberta
Date: 2016-01-28
Status: Investigation Ongoing

In the late afternoon, 28 Jan 2016, the pilot of a Canadian Hawk Mk 115 was performing a Cuban 8 manoeuvre. During the inverted 45 degree portion following the first loop the pilot’s unrestrained publications bag drifted upwards (relative to the cockpit) and aft. The pilot then rolled upright and pulled 5g to complete the Cuban 8. During the 5g pull, the bag dropped down towards the aft portion of the right console and struck the Miniature Detonation Cord (MDC) firing unit (red circle in the photos) with enough force to activate it, fragmenting the canopy. The pilot ceased manoeuvring, slowed the aircraft and RTB without further incident.

The pilot received minor injuries from the MDC combustion products and canopy fragments and there was significant damage to cockpit equipment and external airframe structures. The engine ingested some of the canopy fragments but only received minor damage.

The investigation so far has not identified any technical issues with the airworthiness of the aircraft or the fleet. The investigation is focusing on operational and human factors, primarily the procedures and requirement to carry and store a publications bag in the cockpit. The investigation is also looking at possible ways to protect the MDC firing unit from being inadvertently activated.

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