The Bishop of Bangor, the Right Reverend Andy John, is among those who have sent their condolences following the tragic accident at RAF Valley yesterday.
Rev’d Andy John said: “On behalf of the Diocese of Bangor, our thoughts and prayers are with the family of the engineer who died, as well as with the pilot, the medical staff responsible for care and the pilot’s family. We are also praying for the Chaplain and those involved in the investigation.”
A statement from Group Captain Nick Tucker-Lowe, at RAF Valley yesterday afternoon, described the crash as a tragic accident and said the families of the engineer and the pilot had been informed.
Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier, head of the RAF, said the crash was a “reminder that we must never take for granted the risks our people take in the service of our country”.
“My deepest thoughts are with the friends and family of those involved at this terrible time,” he added.
Prime Minister Theresa May said: “My condolences to the family of the RAF engineer who sadly died today on Anglesey.
“My thoughts are also with the pilot and with the Red Arrows following this tragic incident.”
North Wales Police and other local Emergency Services responded to calls for assistance from RAF Valley following the reports of an incident at the base at approximately 1.30pm on Tuesday.
Chief Inspector Simon Barrasford at North Wales Police who was leading the initial response said: “The aircraft involved, a Red Arrows Hawk crewed by two RAF personnel was reported to have crashed. Sadly I can confirm that one of the two personnel has died whilst his colleague is now being treated in hospital. Our thoughts are with both men’s families at this very difficult time.”
Police and Crime Scene investigators supported by other specialists will now begin a joint and full investigation led by the Air Accident Investigation Branch to establish what led up to and caused this tragic event. Until that time it would be inappropriate to add anything further. The Coroner for north west Wales will also be informed.
Chief Inspector Barrasford added: “North Wales Police are appealing for help from the public and local communities and so I’d ask if anyone sighted the Hawk aircraft this afternoon to contact North Wales Police via the live web chat http://www.north-wales.police.uk/contact/chat-support.aspx or by phoning 101.”