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No fly zone at helicopter crash bird reserve

A USAF Pave Hawk helicopter 'Picture: USAF A1C Trevor T. McBride ANL-150801-114902001
A USAF Pave Hawk helicopter 'Picture: USAF A1C Trevor T. McBride ANL-150801-114902001

The nature reserve where the crew of an RAF Lakenheath helicopter died after a bird strike last year becomes a ‘no fly zone’ from today.

The crash in January 2014 killed four air crew in a Pave Hawk helicopter of the 56th Rescue Squadron, 48th Fighter Wing and a USAF investigation concluded last July it was caused by the aircraft hitting a flock of geese, three of which penetrated the cockpit.

The RAF already had seasonal environmental avoidance areas above Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Cley and Salthouse Marshes but following concerns raised by the trust, Cley Parish Council, residents and North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb, the area has been extended over Cley village and becomes year round from today.

An RAF review recognised the risk of “flight safety hazards outside the breeding season posed by migrating geese”.


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