PC12 Pilot Lands On Closed Runway At Military Base To Be Close To The Beach

All the pilot wanted was a little time alone in nature.

Google Earth image of RAF Valley
Imagery (c) 2020 Google, Imagery (c)2020 Blueksy, Infoterra Ltd & COWI A/S, CNES/Airbus, Getmapping pic, Landsat / Copernicus, Maxar Technologies, Map data (c)2020 United States

A British pilot flying a Pilatus PC-12 landed on a closed runway at an RAF air base. His logic was solid, this according to a story on www.bbc.com. The pilot wanted to go to the beach, so he used Google Earth to look for an airport near the beach, at Anglesey, near the Welsh coast, to get a little sun. The report goes on to say that he believed the airport was a good choice, not only because it’s beachside but also because it allows civilian traffic.

But there were problems with both of those assumptions. The air base does indeed allow civilian planes to land, but only with 24 hours advanced notice. And the runway he chose to land on happened to be closed, a fact he might have noted by the clearly visible X’s marking it.

The story reported that the pilot chose to leave shortly after he was greeted by RAF personnel, who in very British fashion decided that he wasn’t a threat and let it go it at that. No telling how the civil air authority will feel about it, though, but we hope they go easy on him, as the whole affair didn’t work out for him, since he went to all that trouble and didn’t even get to dip his toe.

Some were concerned about the pilot violating travel restrictions, too, though he said he wasn’t a threat because he had already had COVID-19 a couple of months prior.


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