crews that fly in & out of SPS
are on constant look out as it's a militarytraining base. The controllers and pilots are often both in training and screw ups are common so extra vigilance is needed. I did my IOE in DFW
and went into SPS
a few times. My Capt said it's not uncommon for 'excursions' beyond what was assigned to happen and when it does it happens fast with a rookie at the controls. This incident makes me wonder.....
Here's part of a blurb about the accident from my Email news....
"The vast majority of midair collisions are in or near the pattern so investigators have their work cut out for them in the tragic meeting of an Air Tractor crop-duster and an Air Force T-37 5,000 feet above the wide-open spaces of Oklahoma on Tuesday morning. The Air Force pilots, instructor Capt. Christopher S. Otis and student 2nd Lt. Roderick V. James, bailed out safely but the Air Tractor pilot, Derek Nach, died. Hunting guide Jerry Mayfield reached the Tweet pilots first and said one of them told him he didn't see the collision coming. There have been similar events, before.
Nach was ferrying the brand-new Air Tractor from the plant in Olney, Texas, to its new owner in South Dakota. Investigators have declined detailed comment or speculation on the cause of the collision. The crash occurred near Hollister, Okla., in an area commonly used by the air training wings based at Sheppard AFB near Wichita Falls, Texas.
AVweb reported another military/civilian collision in November 2004. The NTSB's current synopsis and probable cause (a PDF file) are available online. After that collision, the F-16 pilot ejected safely and walked to a local house to use the phone. The Cessna pilot was killed. "
Probable cause in that one? Here's the findings:
The failure of the F-16 flight lead pilot and F-16 accident pilot to maintain an adequate visual lookout while maneuvering.
Factors contributing to the accident were: the F-16 flight lead pilot’s decision to discontinue radar traffic advisory service, the F-16 flight lead pilot’s failure to identify a position error in his aircraft’s navigational system, the F-16 pilots subsequent inadvertent entry into class C airspace without establishing and maintaining required communications with air traffic control (ATC); and ATC’s lack of awareness that there was more than one F-16 aircraft in the formation flight, which reduced the ATC controllers ability to detect and resolve the conflict that resulted in the collision.