England

Cotswold Airport closed for plane crash investigation

  • 11 July 2012
  • From the section England
The plane on fire at Cotswold Airport
Image caption The crash is being investigated by the Air Accident Investigation Branch

Cotswold Airport's runway will not reopen until at least Friday following a plane crash, officials have said.

The Bronco aircraft, which crash-landed at Kemble on Tuesday, had been part of a static display at an air tattoo at Fairford at the weekend.

The 47-year-old pilot from Belgium suffered serious burns and is being treated at Bristol's Frenchay Hospital.

Airport bosses said runway surface inspections would take at least two days to complete.

The pilot was said to be in a stable condition after surgery. His wife is with him at the hospital.

Investigations into the crash are continuing.

A spokesman for the Royal International Air Tattoo said the Bronco was a light attack and reconnaissance aircraft that was on display in its Cold War Zone at the weekend.

'Loud thud'

It was developed in the 1960s as a special aircraft for counter-insurgency combat and was used during the Vietnam war.

The plane is usually based at Kortrijk-Wevelgem airport in Belgium.

John Hann, who works at aircraft maintenance training company LRTT further down the airfield, witnessed the incident.

He said: "We heard the engine cut out, heard a loud thud that sounded like it came from upstairs... We could just see absolutely huge flames and smoke, and then we all jumped in our cars and drove up to see what went on."

The crash, which happened just before 15:00 BST, is being investigated by the Air Accident Investigation Branch.

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