Phantom XV477

McDonnell Douglas Phantom FGR2 XV477 (C), 6 Squadron RAF Coningsby
crashed Thack Moor, Alston on 20th November 1972


PositionRank/TitleFull NameAgeService NumberInjury
PilotFlt LtChristoper HaynesFatal
Nav/RadarFlt LtMartin SmithFatal

Accident Details

The aircraft, one of a pair returning to base after a sortie a low level sortie, encountered bad weather near Penrith. Visibility deteriorated as they approached the pennines and the flight carried out the low level abort procedure. During the attempt to climb clear XV477 struck high ground sadly killing the two crew.

The impact was on the southern side of Thack Moor at an altitude of 1,770ft above sea level, and only 130ft from the top of the hill. The aircraft dug a huge furrow in the ground and wreckage was catapulted onto the northern side of the hill where many of the larger sections, including the wings were found scattered across the moor at the top of Bleaberry Gill.

The Crash Site

Very little remains of the aircraft but the impact point is still clearly visible and some small pieces can be found in the soft ground. Other pieces can be found at the top of Bleaberry Gill but they are small and widely scattered.

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