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Hawk Crash

  • Carl Austin-Behan
  • Interview by: Jess Boydon


I'd like to tell you about an aircraft crash,

that happened in September '92.

It was a Hawk aircraft, and fully loaded with ammunition,

and there were two pilots on board.

The first pilot, he ejected, and managed to get out

of the aircraft.

The second pilot, he tried to eject but he ejected

as it impacted onto the runway, so it actually knocked

the pins in the actual bar

for the martin-baker seat offline.

So, he was actually still in the aircraft.

So, when we got there we had to break the canopy

and I climbed on top of the aircraft.

Didn't make the seat safe, but managed to get the pilot out.

I can still to this day see the pilot's face

because his face, even in that short period of time,

his face had melted in to the mask.

I just sort of remember seeing his pearly white teeth,

and it's weird because you can still smell it,

as if it was today, you know, as if it was yesterday.

It was a lot of fuel, there was ammunition coming off,

there were bits of it flying off everywhere.

So, I managed to get him off to safety.

Unfortunately, he died eleven days later

due to smoke inhalation.

With that, I got the humane society bronze award

for bravery.

I got a good soldier certificate from the company it self.

  • Carl Austin-Behan with a fire engine

    © RAF Museum

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