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Press Reports on Hemple-CASA

HEMPLE – Press Reports

Further references on YAK aircraft

 

The following are worth a read:

Contempt for authority and the rule of law _ The Ramble

CASA knew dark truth about rogue aviator Barry Hempel _ The Australian

Pilot’s widow sued over joyflight death _ The Courier-Mail

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From the Coroner’s inquest findings on 4th October 2013:

cif-hempel-bi-lovell-ir-20131004

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Coroner attacks Australia’s aviation watchdog, saying aerobatic pilot Barry Hempel should not have flown

Crash pilot 'shouldn't have been in the air'

The aviation watchdog has been criticised for allowing Barry Hempel to continue flying. Source: News Limited

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday.

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday. Source: News Limited

A WOMAN whose partner died during a joyflight for his 35th birthday has criticised the nation’s aviation watchdog after a coroner found the pilot was not authorised to take paying customers and had suffered an epileptic fit moments before the fatal crash.

Samantha Hare purchased a flight for $492 for her partner Ian Lovell after doing checks on pilot Barry Hempel.

Mr Lovell was killed along with Mr Hempel when the Hempel Aviation Yak-52 warbird crashed into the sea near Stradbroke Island on August 31, 2008.

Coroner John Hutton today heavily criticised the Civil Aviation Safety Authority for ignoring medical warnings and allowing the pilot to fly after his licence was cancelled in 2001.

“None of this brings Ian back,” Ms Hare said outside court today.

“Recommendations can be put forward … but Ian is gone.”

Ms Hare said the information about the pilot should have been made available including that his commercial licence had been suspended.

“I’m angry at CASA,” she said.

“I’m angry really when it comes down to it CASA is the regulatory body and they did nothing to stop Barry from flying.

“I think there needs to be a better way for people to be able to check what kind of licences pilots hold.”

“What he did in flying Ian was illegal and he had had his commercial licence suspended but CASA actually gave him the freedom.”

In reading out the findings today Mr Hutton said moments before the crash Mr Lovell, a passenger in the two-seat plane, had inadvertently transmitted a six-second message on a microphone.

He said: “Oh my God, what are you doing? Put it up (or put it on)”.

There was no response from Mr Hempel.

The findings released today said an autopsy found there was “gross evidence” that Mr Hempel, a pilot of 40 years, had a prior injury and scarring which could cause seizures.

He had been struck by a hangar door in May 2001 and suffered a seizure, and two Queensland ambulance reports of incidents in July and October 2002 showed they were consistent with epileptic seizures.

His licence was cancelled in 2001 after the incident.

The information was supplied to CASA.

Dr Andrew Spall, who had known Mr Hempel since 1980, had given the pilot Tegretol in 2002, which is commonly prescribed for epilepsy.

The coroner found the doctor failed in his duty to to advise CASA he had reservations concerning epilepsy and that he had prescribed him with Tegretol.

In 2005, Dr Ian Maxwell cleared Mr Hempel to fly but he did not disclose one of the incidents to the doctor and described the other as fainting.

“It’s is quite clear that Barry Hempel was both a liar and and conniver in dealing with Dr Maxwell,” Mr Hutton said in his findings.

The doctor during the inquest said Mr Hempel’s career would have been over as a pilot had Mr Hempel or CASA had disclosed the information.

Mr Hutton said it was “unbelievable” CASA had not acted after receiving a Queensland Ambulance Service report and that that CASA’s aviation medical branch officers had been “cavalier” and disregarded clear warnings as to Mr Hempel’s epileptic state.

“This document ought it have put CASA on red alert as to Barry Hempel’s ability to fly,” the coroner said in his findings.

At the time of his death Mr Hempel held a private pilot’s licence but his commercial, transport and commercial helicopter licence had been cancelled, meaning he was not allowed to take paying customers.

He had more than two pages of history with CASA dating back to 1968 for breaching flying regulations.

Mr Hutton said given his history of breaches and evidence in the inquest which suggested he thought he was “above the law” it was “indeed extraordinary that he was left with even a private pilot’s licence”.

“CASA knew he flew with total disregard for the safety regulations enacted to protect the public, passengers and the aviation industry generally,” Mr Hutton said.

He found it was likely Mr Hempel suffered a seizure.

Mr Hutton recommended that CASA immediately consider releasing names of pilots who have conditions imposed on their licence or had their licence suspended or cancelled.

He also recommended CASA consider a register of pilots which included licence suspensions and cancellations on its website.

Another recommendation was that when investigating a pilot’s fitness CASA should consider adopting a practice to obtain ambulance, paramedic and hospital reports and attempt to contact the authors of the reports.

The final recommendation was that the Queensland Government consider involvement in the Commonwealth’s centralised medical treatment system.

A spokesman for CASA said the organisation would “carefully consider” the recommendations but could give no timeframe on when it would respond to them or if any would be implemented.

He also declined to comment on any criticisms of the aviation body.

– See more at: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/coroner-attacks-australia8217s-aviation-watchdog-saying-aerobatic-pilot-barry-hempel-should-not-have-flown/story-e6frg6n6-1226732895245#sthash.LH7j6NIy.dpuf

Click here to find out more!

Coroner attacks Australia’s aviation watchdog, saying aerobatic pilot Barry Hempel should not have flown

Crash pilot 'shouldn't have been in the air'

The aviation watchdog has been criticised for allowing Barry Hempel to continue flying. Source: News Limited

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday.

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday. Source: News Limited

A WOMAN whose partner died during a joyflight for his 35th birthday has criticised the nation’s aviation watchdog after a coroner found the pilot was not authorised to take paying customers and had suffered an epileptic fit moments before the fatal crash.

Samantha Hare purchased a flight for $492 for her partner Ian Lovell after doing checks on pilot Barry Hempel.

Mr Lovell was killed along with Mr Hempel when the Hempel Aviation Yak-52 warbird crashed into the sea near Stradbroke Island on August 31, 2008.

Coroner John Hutton today heavily criticised the Civil Aviation Safety Authority for ignoring medical warnings and allowing the pilot to fly after his licence was cancelled in 2001.

“None of this brings Ian back,” Ms Hare said outside court today.

“Recommendations can be put forward … but Ian is gone.”

Ms Hare said the information about the pilot should have been made available including that his commercial licence had been suspended.

“I’m angry at CASA,” she said.

“I’m angry really when it comes down to it CASA is the regulatory body and they did nothing to stop Barry from flying.

“I think there needs to be a better way for people to be able to check what kind of licences pilots hold.”

“What he did in flying Ian was illegal and he had had his commercial licence suspended but CASA actually gave him the freedom.”

In reading out the findings today Mr Hutton said moments before the crash Mr Lovell, a passenger in the two-seat plane, had inadvertently transmitted a six-second message on a microphone.

He said: “Oh my God, what are you doing? Put it up (or put it on)”.

There was no response from Mr Hempel.

The findings released today said an autopsy found there was “gross evidence” that Mr Hempel, a pilot of 40 years, had a prior injury and scarring which could cause seizures.

He had been struck by a hangar door in May 2001 and suffered a seizure, and two Queensland ambulance reports of incidents in July and October 2002 showed they were consistent with epileptic seizures.

His licence was cancelled in 2001 after the incident.

The information was supplied to CASA.

Dr Andrew Spall, who had known Mr Hempel since 1980, had given the pilot Tegretol in 2002, which is commonly prescribed for epilepsy.

The coroner found the doctor failed in his duty to to advise CASA he had reservations concerning epilepsy and that he had prescribed him with Tegretol.

In 2005, Dr Ian Maxwell cleared Mr Hempel to fly but he did not disclose one of the incidents to the doctor and described the other as fainting.

“It’s is quite clear that Barry Hempel was both a liar and and conniver in dealing with Dr Maxwell,” Mr Hutton said in his findings.

The doctor during the inquest said Mr Hempel’s career would have been over as a pilot had Mr Hempel or CASA had disclosed the information.

Mr Hutton said it was “unbelievable” CASA had not acted after receiving a Queensland Ambulance Service report and that that CASA’s aviation medical branch officers had been “cavalier” and disregarded clear warnings as to Mr Hempel’s epileptic state.

“This document ought it have put CASA on red alert as to Barry Hempel’s ability to fly,” the coroner said in his findings.

At the time of his death Mr Hempel held a private pilot’s licence but his commercial, transport and commercial helicopter licence had been cancelled, meaning he was not allowed to take paying customers.

He had more than two pages of history with CASA dating back to 1968 for breaching flying regulations.

Mr Hutton said given his history of breaches and evidence in the inquest which suggested he thought he was “above the law” it was “indeed extraordinary that he was left with even a private pilot’s licence”.

“CASA knew he flew with total disregard for the safety regulations enacted to protect the public, passengers and the aviation industry generally,” Mr Hutton said.

He found it was likely Mr Hempel suffered a seizure.

Mr Hutton recommended that CASA immediately consider releasing names of pilots who have conditions imposed on their licence or had their licence suspended or cancelled.

He also recommended CASA consider a register of pilots which included licence suspensions and cancellations on its website.

Another recommendation was that when investigating a pilot’s fitness CASA should consider adopting a practice to obtain ambulance, paramedic and hospital reports and attempt to contact the authors of the reports.

The final recommendation was that the Queensland Government consider involvement in the Commonwealth’s centralised medical treatment system.

A spokesman for CASA said the organisation would “carefully consider” the recommendations but could give no timeframe on when it would respond to them or if any would be implemented.

He also declined to comment on any criticisms of the aviation body.

###

– See more at: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/coroner-attacks-australia8217s-aviation-watchdog-saying-aerobatic-pilot-barry-hempel-should-not-have-flown/story-e6frg6n6-1226732895245#sthash.LH7j6NIy.dpuf

The Australian on 4th October 2013

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/coroner-attacks-australia8217s-aviation-watchdog-saying-aerobatic-pilot-barry-hempel-should-not-have-flown/story-e6frg6n6-1226732895245

Click here to find out more!

Coroner attacks Australia’s aviation watchdog, saying aerobatic pilot Barry Hempel should not have flown

Crash pilot 'shouldn't have been in the air'

The aviation watchdog has been criticised for allowing Barry Hempel to continue flying. Source: News Limited

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday.

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday. Source: News Limited

A WOMAN whose partner died during a joyflight for his 35th birthday has criticised the nation’s aviation watchdog after a coroner found the pilot was not authorised to take paying customers and had suffered an epileptic fit moments before the fatal crash.

Samantha Hare purchased a flight for $492 for her partner Ian Lovell after doing checks on pilot Barry Hempel.

Mr Lovell was killed along with Mr Hempel when the Hempel Aviation Yak-52 warbird crashed into the sea near Stradbroke Island on August 31, 2008.

Coroner John Hutton today heavily criticised the Civil Aviation Safety Authority for ignoring medical warnings and allowing the pilot to fly after his licence was cancelled in 2001.

“None of this brings Ian back,” Ms Hare said outside court today.

“Recommendations can be put forward … but Ian is gone.”

Ms Hare said the information about the pilot should have been made available including that his commercial licence had been suspended.

“I’m angry at CASA,” she said.

“I’m angry really when it comes down to it CASA is the regulatory body and they did nothing to stop Barry from flying.

“I think there needs to be a better way for people to be able to check what kind of licences pilots hold.”

“What he did in flying Ian was illegal and he had had his commercial licence suspended but CASA actually gave him the freedom.”

In reading out the findings today Mr Hutton said moments before the crash Mr Lovell, a passenger in the two-seat plane, had inadvertently transmitted a six-second message on a microphone.

He said: “Oh my God, what are you doing? Put it up (or put it on)”.

There was no response from Mr Hempel.

The findings released today said an autopsy found there was “gross evidence” that Mr Hempel, a pilot of 40 years, had a prior injury and scarring which could cause seizures.

He had been struck by a hangar door in May 2001 and suffered a seizure, and two Queensland ambulance reports of incidents in July and October 2002 showed they were consistent with epileptic seizures.

His licence was cancelled in 2001 after the incident.

The information was supplied to CASA.

Dr Andrew Spall, who had known Mr Hempel since 1980, had given the pilot Tegretol in 2002, which is commonly prescribed for epilepsy.

The coroner found the doctor failed in his duty to to advise CASA he had reservations concerning epilepsy and that he had prescribed him with Tegretol.

In 2005, Dr Ian Maxwell cleared Mr Hempel to fly but he did not disclose one of the incidents to the doctor and described the other as fainting.

“It’s is quite clear that Barry Hempel was both a liar and and conniver in dealing with Dr Maxwell,” Mr Hutton said in his findings.

The doctor during the inquest said Mr Hempel’s career would have been over as a pilot had Mr Hempel or CASA had disclosed the information.

Mr Hutton said it was “unbelievable” CASA had not acted after receiving a Queensland Ambulance Service report and that that CASA’s aviation medical branch officers had been “cavalier” and disregarded clear warnings as to Mr Hempel’s epileptic state.

“This document ought it have put CASA on red alert as to Barry Hempel’s ability to fly,” the coroner said in his findings.

At the time of his death Mr Hempel held a private pilot’s licence but his commercial, transport and commercial helicopter licence had been cancelled, meaning he was not allowed to take paying customers.

He had more than two pages of history with CASA dating back to 1968 for breaching flying regulations.

Mr Hutton said given his history of breaches and evidence in the inquest which suggested he thought he was “above the law” it was “indeed extraordinary that he was left with even a private pilot’s licence”.

“CASA knew he flew with total disregard for the safety regulations enacted to protect the public, passengers and the aviation industry generally,” Mr Hutton said.

He found it was likely Mr Hempel suffered a seizure.

Mr Hutton recommended that CASA immediately consider releasing names of pilots who have conditions imposed on their licence or had their licence suspended or cancelled.

He also recommended CASA consider a register of pilots which included licence suspensions and cancellations on its website.

Another recommendation was that when investigating a pilot’s fitness CASA should consider adopting a practice to obtain ambulance, paramedic and hospital reports and attempt to contact the authors of the reports.

The final recommendation was that the Queensland Government consider involvement in the Commonwealth’s centralised medical treatment system.

A spokesman for CASA said the organisation would “carefully consider” the recommendations but could give no timeframe on when it would respond to them or if any would be implemented.

He also declined to comment on any criticisms of the aviation body.

###

– See more at: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/coroner-attacks-australia8217s-aviation-watchdog-saying-aerobatic-pilot-barry-hempel-should-not-have-flown/story-e6frg6n6-1226732895245#sthash.LH7j6NIy.dpuf

Click here to find out more!

Coroner attacks Australia’s aviation watchdog, saying aerobatic pilot Barry Hempel should not have flown

Crash pilot 'shouldn't have been in the air'

The aviation watchdog has been criticised for allowing Barry Hempel to continue flying. Source: News Limited

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday.

Samantha Hare lost her partner Ian Lovell in the crash, after buying him a voucher for the joyflight for his birthday. Source: News Limited

A WOMAN whose partner died during a joyflight for his 35th birthday has criticised the nation’s aviation watchdog after a coroner found the pilot was not authorised to take paying customers and had suffered an epileptic fit moments before the fatal crash.

Samantha Hare purchased a flight for $492 for her partner Ian Lovell after doing checks on pilot Barry Hempel.

Mr Lovell was killed along with Mr Hempel when the Hempel Aviation Yak-52 warbird crashed into the sea near Stradbroke Island on August 31, 2008.

Coroner John Hutton today heavily criticised the Civil Aviation Safety Authority for ignoring medical warnings and allowing the pilot to fly after his licence was cancelled in 2001.

“None of this brings Ian back,” Ms Hare said outside court today.

“Recommendations can be put forward … but Ian is gone.”

Ms Hare said the information about the pilot should have been made available including that his commercial licence had been suspended.

“I’m angry at CASA,” she said.

“I’m angry really when it comes down to it CASA is the regulatory body and they did nothing to stop Barry from flying.

“I think there needs to be a better way for people to be able to check what kind of licences pilots hold.”

“What he did in flying Ian was illegal and he had had his commercial licence suspended but CASA actually gave him the freedom.”

In reading out the findings today Mr Hutton said moments before the crash Mr Lovell, a passenger in the two-seat plane, had inadvertently transmitted a six-second message on a microphone.

He said: “Oh my God, what are you doing? Put it up (or put it on)”.

There was no response from Mr Hempel.

The findings released today said an autopsy found there was “gross evidence” that Mr Hempel, a pilot of 40 years, had a prior injury and scarring which could cause seizures.

He had been struck by a hangar door in May 2001 and suffered a seizure, and two Queensland ambulance reports of incidents in July and October 2002 showed they were consistent with epileptic seizures.

His licence was cancelled in 2001 after the incident.

The information was supplied to CASA.

Dr Andrew Spall, who had known Mr Hempel since 1980, had given the pilot Tegretol in 2002, which is commonly prescribed for epilepsy.

The coroner found the doctor failed in his duty to to advise CASA he had reservations concerning epilepsy and that he had prescribed him with Tegretol.

In 2005, Dr Ian Maxwell cleared Mr Hempel to fly but he did not disclose one of the incidents to the doctor and described the other as fainting.

“It’s is quite clear that Barry Hempel was both a liar and and conniver in dealing with Dr Maxwell,” Mr Hutton said in his findings.

The doctor during the inquest said Mr Hempel’s career would have been over as a pilot had Mr Hempel or CASA had disclosed the information.

Mr Hutton said it was “unbelievable” CASA had not acted after receiving a Queensland Ambulance Service report and that that CASA’s aviation medical branch officers had been “cavalier” and disregarded clear warnings as to Mr Hempel’s epileptic state.

“This document ought it have put CASA on red alert as to Barry Hempel’s ability to fly,” the coroner said in his findings.

At the time of his death Mr Hempel held a private pilot’s licence but his commercial, transport and commercial helicopter licence had been cancelled, meaning he was not allowed to take paying customers.

He had more than two pages of history with CASA dating back to 1968 for breaching flying regulations.

Mr Hutton said given his history of breaches and evidence in the inquest which suggested he thought he was “above the law” it was “indeed extraordinary that he was left with even a private pilot’s licence”.

“CASA knew he flew with total disregard for the safety regulations enacted to protect the public, passengers and the aviation industry generally,” Mr Hutton said.

He found it was likely Mr Hempel suffered a seizure.

Mr Hutton recommended that CASA immediately consider releasing names of pilots who have conditions imposed on their licence or had their licence suspended or cancelled.

He also recommended CASA consider a register of pilots which included licence suspensions and cancellations on its website.

Another recommendation was that when investigating a pilot’s fitness CASA should consider adopting a practice to obtain ambulance, paramedic and hospital reports and attempt to contact the authors of the reports.

The final recommendation was that the Queensland Government consider involvement in the Commonwealth’s centralised medical treatment system.

A spokesman for CASA said the organisation would “carefully consider” the recommendations but could give no timeframe on when it would respond to them or if any would be implemented.

He also declined to comment on any criticisms of the aviation body.

###

– See more at: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/coroner-attacks-australia8217s-aviation-watchdog-saying-aerobatic-pilot-barry-hempel-should-not-have-flown/story-e6frg6n6-1226732895245#sthash.LH7j6NIy.dpuf

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Aviation watchdog’s failure to ground unsafe pilot ‘unbelievable’, says coroner

CASA knew of Barry Hempel’s safety breaches and seizures well before fatal crash that killed him and Ian Lovell

Australian Associated Press

 

Barry Hempel case
Samantha Hare, whose boyfriend Ian Lovell died in the crash, wants to make sure CASA implements coroner’s recommendations. Photograph: Dan Peled/AAPImage

A coroner has savaged Australia’s aviation watchdog for failing to ground a pilot with a history of seizures and safety breaches.

Veteran aerobatic pilot Barry Hempel and his 35-year-old passenger, Ian Lovell, died when Hempel’s plane plunged into the ocean off South Stradbroke Island in October 2008.

Tragically, Lovell’s girlfriend, Samantha Hare, had bought him the joy flight as a birthday gift, unaware that the pilot had been stripped of his licence to carry paying passengers because of safety breaches. She also didn’t know, when she made the booking, that the pilot had a history of seizures, something the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) was aware of but did nothing about.

Queensland coroner John Hutton said on Friday it was “unbelievable” that CASA had allowed the pilot to keep his private licence. He said CASA knew well before the fatal crash about Hempel’s history of safety breaches and that he had also suffered a series of seizures.

Hutton said CASA’s Aviation Medical Branch had been in possession of a Queensland Ambulance Service report that discussed how Hempel had become agitated after suffering a seizure in 2002.

That report also indicated Hempel had suffered at least two other seizures in the year leading up to the 2002 event.

“This document ought to have put CASA on red alert as to Barry Hempel’s ability to fly,” Hutton found.

“It is unbelievable that CASA did not act.”

Hutton said it defied belief that the report wasn’t given to a neurologist who, in 2005, was asked to assess Hempel’s suitability for flying. Instead, the neurologist had to rely solely on Hempel to disclose his medical history, the coroner said.

“There seemed to be within CASA a culture of accepting whatever the pilot says, notwithstanding evidence by trained paramedics to the contrary,” Hutton said.

The coroner found the pilot had likely suffered a seizure while in the air, and that caused the fatal crash.

He recommended CASA begin disseminating the names of pilots whose licences are cancelled or changed, and set up a new register to record pilots’ licence details.

Speaking outside the court, Hare said nothing would bring back the man she had loved so dearly. She said her focus now was on making sure CASA implemented the coroner’s recommendations.

“I don’t want another family to go through what we’ve been through,” she said.

CASA spokesman Peter Gibson said the authority was studying the coroner’s findings and recommendations. It was too early to comment further, he said.

 

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From the Brisbane Times:

Death crash pilot ‘shouldn’t have flown’

Date

 

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And from 18th March 2013:

Pilot in fatal crash ‘had brain injury’ Crime and Court News _ goldcoast.com

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-03-18/inquest-into-double-fatal-plane-crash-begins/4580618

by 21st June 2013:

Woman sues doctors over partner’s death during joy flight crash with pilot Barry Hemp

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Hempel

Pilot Barry Hempel.

TWO doctors involved in medically clearing a pilot to fly are being sued by the partner of a man who was killed in a joyflight plane crash off South Stradbroke Island.

Samantha Hare is suing neurologist Dr Ian Maxwell and GP Dr Andrew Spall for $955,000 for alleged negligence.

The Supreme Court claim alleges if the two designated aviation medical examiners had not breached their duties pilot Barry Hempel would have been medically excluded from flying.

In August 2008 Ms Hare paid $495 for a joy flight for her de facto partner Ian Lovell, 35.

The plane, piloted by Barry Hempel, crashed into the sea near South Stradbroke Island on August 31, 2008, killing Mr Lovell, a lead animator, and Mr Hempel.

Samantha Hare reveals her depth of despair at losing her partner in plane crash

The claim alleges Dr Maxwell knew Mr Hempel had pre-existing medical conditions that made him unfit to pass as medically fit for flying, but did not inform Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

Dr Maxwell wrote a report to CASA in March 2006 saying Mr Hempel was medically fit and recommending he be cleared to fly, the claim says.

The claim, filed by Kerin Lawyers, says Mr Hempel suffered a serious head injury when a hangar door fell on his head in 2001 and he had to be ventilated in intensive care.

Dr Maxwell failed to answer CASA’s questions about Mr Hempel’s head injury, it is alleged.

In 2002 Mr Hempel lost consciousness on Dunk Island and later that year he was treated by ambulance officers for “a tonic clonic seizure”, but refused to go to hospital, the claim says.

It is alleged that in 2005 Dr Spall expressed his concerns about Mr Hempel’s risk of epilepsy to Dr Maxwell, who allegedly did not notify CASA.

Dr Spall was aware of Mr Hempel’s two medical events in 2002 and prescribed an anti-epilepsy drug after the second incident, the claim says.

Dr Spall did not tell CASA of his concerns that Mr Hempel had epilepsy and that he had been prescribed anti-epilepsy medication, it is alleged.

In February, 2005, Dr Spall completed a medical examination report that failed to indicate Mr Hempel had suffered fits, faints or funny turns or used prescription medication, the claim says.

Ms Hare suffered nervous shock and emotional distress when told the plane had crashed into the sea, the claim says.

 

Joy flight turns into a nightmare

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Ms Hare, who had planned a future with Mr Lovell, suffers from depression, anxiety, emotional vulnerability and symptoms “akin to post traumatic stress disorder”, the claim says.

She has been unable to continue her career as a social worker.

Dr Maxwell and Dr Spall are yet to file defences to the claim.

A coronial inquest into the deaths of Mr Lovell and Mr Hempel has concluded but the coroner is yet to deliver findings.

###


Read more: http://www.couriermail.com.au/national-news/queensland/woman-sues-doctors-over-partner8217s-death-during-joy-flight-crash-with-pilot-barry-hempel/story-fnii5v6w-1226667749832#ixzz2WtcWFCu7

 

and on 22nd March 2012:

Pilot’s doctor ignored advice, court told

Matthew Killoran   |  01:37pm March 22, 2013 | Gold Coast News

 A CIVIL Aviation Safety Authority doctor assessing the pilot’s licence of Barry Hempel, who was later involved in a fatal crash, disregarded a colleague’s request for more medical tests to be done, a coronial inquest heard this morning.

Mr Hempel flew a Yak52 warbird that crashed near South Stradbroke Island in August 2008, killing him and passenger Ian Ross Lovell.

The inquest has been told Mr Hempel was given a pilot’s licence despite having a history of seizures.

It heard when CASA approved Mr Hempel’s licence in 2005 it was in possession of an ambulance report from 2002 which stated he had suffered a seizure and had at least two before that.

Ken Fleming QC said CASA records showed one doctor had requested Mr Hempel be evaluated by a neuro-psychologist, but Dr Rob Liddell disregarded the recommendation.

“You are completely ignoring the advise of the doctor above saying we need another neuro-psychologist’s report,” he said.

Dr Liddell denied that he ignored the recommendation.

“I would have considered it, I just didn’t agree with it,” he said.

See more on this story in tomorrow’s Bulletin.

———————————————————————————————————————————–

 Previous reports:

Flying ace in fatal crash had no passenger licence

ONE of Australia’s flying legends, veteran aerobatic champion Barry Hempel, was not licensed to carry commercial passengers when his stunt plane plunged into the ocean off southeast Queensland on Sunday, killing him and a paying joyrider.

Police and safety officials are investigating the cause of the crash of the converted Russian Yak-52 stunt plane, and the operation of Hempels Aviation, a Brisbane-based charter business and flight school with a fleet of 25 aircraft that was headed by the 60-year-old flying ace.

Sources close to the investigation told The Australian yesterday Mr Hempel had only a private pilot’s licence and was not certified to take paying passengers on flights.

The girlfriend of Mr Hempel’s passenger, Ian Lovell, 35, bought a $492 aerobatic flight ticket for him as a gift.

Investigators have receipts and witnesses to the transaction ahead of the ill-fated flight, which took off from Archerfield Airport, on the western outskirts of Brisbane, and crashed into the sea off South Stradbroke Island about 12.30pm on Sunday.

“The thinking is this was not the first time Hempel took up paying customers either,” a source said.

Witnesses reported seeing the red plane perform a series of dives and loops before going into a steep dive and then plummeting into the sea.

The bodies of the two men were retrieved on Tuesday after Queensland Police using sonar equipment found the downed aircraft in 20m of water. Civil Aviation Safety Authority spokesman Peter Gibson said last night, in response to questions about Mr Hempel’s pilot’s licence, that he could not comment on the investigation because of privacy laws.

Mr Gibson said CASA was inquiring into the operations of Hempels Aviation. “We are investigating because there may be issues which go to the ongoing safety of the company,” he said.

“We are also assisting the coroner with the investigation.”

Hempels Aviation chief pilot Michael Lawrence last night declined to answer questions about the status of Mr Hempel’s licence or whether he was certified to take Mr Lovell on the flight.

“I cannot comment – speak to CASA,” he said. Mr Lawrence said Mr Hempel had been instructing trainee pilots until some years ago.

It is understood Mr Hempel had a medical condition, and his licence had conditions attached.

The investigation into the crash will be handled by police and CASA and overseen by the coroner, with the initial report expected next week.

On his website, Mr Hempel boasts that he qualified at 23 for the highest licence rating, that of Airline Transport Pilot.

He won the Queensland and Australian Aerobatic Championships in the advanced category.

“I feel as though I have done just about as much as I can in other fields of aviation,” he said on the Hempels Aviation website. “Aerobatics is the ultimate test for a pilot.”

The website says of Mr Hempel: “After more than 28,000 hours of flying everything from Lear jets to airliners, Barry now runs his own flying school and charter operations … and spends the majority of his time passing on his skills to others.”

The Brisbane-based Mr Lovell emigrated to Australia in the past few years and became an Australian citizen this year.

He was a lead animator in a computer game company, and his family is planning memorial services in England and Australia.

A private funeral for Mr Hempel is expected to be held within the next few days, with a public memorial being organised for later this month.

——————————————————————————————————————————————–

From The Australian:

CASA knew dark truth about rogue aviator Barry Hempel

Aeroplane crash

Ian parents Dave and Lynn. Picture: Jack Tran Source: The Australian

LONG before Barry Hempel, a legend of Australia’s commercial aviation industry, strapped himself and an unwitting passenger in for a final, fateful aerobatic flight that ended 13 minutes later with their deaths, startling truths about the career pilot’s conduct were well known to authorities.

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority knew Hempel, 60, to be a serial menace to public safety. His disciplinary record for flagrant breaches and dishonesty went back decades and became worse as he aged. He had put passengers and unsuspecting members of the public at risk with cavalier antics that appalled safety investigators – and cemented Hempel’s status as a maverick with extraordinary skills but shocking judgment.

Doctors, medical specialists and CASA also knew that Hempel, who ran a Brisbane-based aviation company (motto: the sky’s the limit) that flew politicians such as Nationals senator Barnaby Joyce, business chiefs and joy-riders, had severe epileptic-like seizures, believed to have begun after a brain injury from a hangar door accident in 2001. A loss of consciousness, rigidity and convulsing would occur; one ambulance officer who reported a 10-minute episode was so concerned about Hempel’s status as a pilot that he kept notes on it for a decade.

These seizures would render Hempel an even more dangerous threat to the public. In one instance that became “common knowledge” shortly before his death, he was flying a Beechcraft Baron to Brisbane from the rural town of Dalby when, according to Nigel Arnot, an aircraft engineer, Hempel suddenly had “a seizure, a full fit with shaking”. A friend “had to literally punch him out” to prevent inadvertent use of the controls and disaster.

Pilots with epilepsy or seizures face bans of 10 years to life because of the obvious dangers, yet Hempel kept flying.

Police, lawyers and doctors also knew another, darker side of the charismatic aviator with the distinctive handle-bar moustache. He had a criminal rap sheet for public indecency in Queensland going back 40 years; his guilty pleas and most recent convictions for public masturbation near children in parks in Brisbane were recorded a few months before the August 2008 crash.

But the flying public knew little, if anything, of any of these matters. Neither Hempel, nor CASA, was transparent about his safety transgressions. Despite dozens of pages of documentation about the seizures, and voluminous catalogues of his repeated defiance of safety rules, dishonesty, and the routine abuse of an unwitting public’s trust in him as a pilot, CASA, a federal government-funded regulatory agency, still permitted Hempel to fly from his Archerfield airport base.

Official documents show that CASA even let Hempel maintain his private pilot aeroplane licence to conduct endorsement training of other aviators, despite 13 fresh convictions under the Civil Aviation Act, and a CASA finding in November 2007 that stated “you have a long established record of breaking the law relevant to aviation safety which is indicative of an intrinsic lack of honesty and integrity which is incompatible with you being entrusted with flight crew licences … your record of motor vehicle-related offences as well as the aviation-related offences indicates a flagrant disregard by you of safety matters … your actions indicate an inappropriate attitude to legal authority, and a flagrant disregard to the collective requirements of safety systems … (you are) an unacceptable risk to recidivism that threatens aviation safety”.

It was a scathing judgment that stripped Hempel of his commercial pilot’s licence – yet it expressly allowed him to continue flying, as well as endorsement for training and instructing (teaching existing pilots how to fly different types of planes). He had been performing the instructing role for many years and with numerous pilots. Its legacy today is in the cockpits of passenger jets in Australia and around the world – the pilots who owe their wings to Hempel, who had himself logged more than 28,000 hours since he first flew in 1964.

The effect of CASA’s ruling was meant to forbid Hempel from taking fare-paying passengers on his aerobatic higher-risk flights. But he openly flouted this and widely promoted his business under CASA’s nose.

As one pilot on internet forum Pprune said in a posting that is now evidence before a Queensland coronial inquiry: “He was supposed to be a role model, but tell me … how many young idiots have killed themselves trying to imitate bad boy Bazza? Is anyone who actually knew Barry surprised?”

The life and death of Hempel – as laid out in many volumes of evidence examined by The Weekend Australian pending the findings of the coronial inquiry – reads like a story of a disaster waiting to happen. The material depicts a doctor-shopping, law-breaking, medically unfit pilot; a serious breakdown in communications and regulatory systems; a lack of responsiveness and disclosure by those in aviation who had witnessed his antics; and an enduring tragedy for a young woman, Samantha Hare, who made one fatal error – she surprised her boyfriend, Ian Lovell, with a $492 birthday gift voucher for a joy-ride in Hempel’s two-seater Soviet Yak military trainer.

Evidence and other material uncovered by police and Kerin Lawyers points to a likelihood that Hempel had suffered a seizure during the flight and was physically incapable of keeping the throttle, or power, on, resulting in the Yak plunging into the sea at a velocity of about 300km/h. In many crashes in which pilots brace before impact, their hands and wrists are broken. Hempel’s hands and wrists were not injured, indicating he was not conscious when impact occurred.

Hare, of Brisbane, and Lovell’s parents Dave and Lynn, who travelled from their home in England, could not listen to a recorded audio grab of the 35-year-old’s last words, in a radio transmission to Hempel moments before the crash in water between North and South Stradbroke Island off the Gold Coast. Lovell was shouting to Hempel: “Oh, oh my god. What are you doing? Put it on!”

At Archerfield airport in Brisbane, Hare, who said she and Lovell had “planned on spending the rest of our lives together”, waited patiently for his return to base. She had photographed him in the Yak before take-off and recalled him saying “it was the best present he had ever received”.

But she noticed one of Hempel’s staff looking increasingly stressed while waiting for the Yak to come back. The staff member took a phone call and Hare heard him say: “It crashed.”

In a comprehensive forensic report for Coroner John Hutton, police officer Graham Anderson summarised six volumes of CASA material on Hempel “that involved an extensive list of prosecutions for administrative and flying breaches”, “multiple offences in numerous aircraft”, “numerous occasions when he flew without a current medical certificate” and attempts to distance himself from rules by appointing his second wife, then newly wed from The Philippines, as chief executive of Hempel’s Aviation. The evidence raises serious questions about CASA’s role in failing to rub Hempel out.

Anderson’s report, which highlights “incapacitation” (seizure) as the most likely reason for the crash, recommends consideration of “mandatory reporting by health professionals to CASA when any serious medical condition could adversely risk the health and well being of the pilot or any other person”. However, it is clear from the material that CASA had known about the seizures.

Anderson concluded: “Had a conscious decision by Hempel been made not to conduct these unauthorised flights, then the previous passengers would not have been put at risk and Ian Lovell would not have died as a result. In my opinion it was ultimately Hempel’s misrepresentation that eventually directed Ian Lovell into the passenger’s seat. Specialist advice to not fly (or drive cars) until epilepsy had been excluded was also ignored, 10 months before the crash. I believe it reasonable to assume that on this occasion, Hempel knew he had a significantly higher risk of crashing and to that end, behaved in a negligent manner.”

A year before his death, Hempel and his solicitor had met CASA officials in a bid to mitigate the punishment he was anticipating from his safety breaches. Hempel told the group in a recorded interview: “I’ve been in aviation virtually full-time all my life since I was 16, I’ve been to the school of hard knocks and learnt myself through my own aviation. I can do it in me sleep, you know, I do it very safely, I don’t do anything ‘harum scarum’, and when I’m teaching people low-level aerobatics, I teach them with a mind to staying alive.”

Hutton, who concluded public hearings last week, has reserved his findings. For Hare, her parents, and the devastated family of Lovell, the priority is to lift safety standards, improve transparency for the public about the disciplinary record of pilots, and influence CASA, aviators and doctors to take a tougher line with other daring, medically unfit mavericks in Australia’s skies.

 

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