Air Trainer incident at Ohakea

1 March 2010

During training this morning two aircraft of the Royal New Zealand Air Force Red Checkers display team touched causing minor damage to one aircraft. The damaged aircraft subsequently landed safely at around 0930 hrs this morning.

“The Red Checkers fly in close proximity to each other and this morning two of them touched. There are always risks involved in military aviation and we mitigate those risks as best we are able.

How this incident happened is now being investigated as a matter of course and the prudent decision is not to fly the team again this season.

“We apologise to all of those who were looking forward to see the Red Checkers display this year,” says Group Captain Stephen Davies Howard, Commander of the RNZAF Training Group who is responsible for the authorisation and safety of the Team.

“We are continually focussed on making our flying operations as safe as possible.”

The team has been heartened by the response of the New Zealand public since the loss of Red Checker, SQN LDR Nick Cree in January and would like to thank them for their continued support


Contact: For more information contact: GP CAPT Stephen Davies Howard (027) 490 2197


Formed in 1969 the Red Checkers are made up of five planes and pilots drawn from the Pilot Training Squadron of the RNZAF’s Central Flying School based at Ohakea Air Force base.

They fly CT-4E Air Trainer aircraft, which are also used by the flying school, and they perform regularly for the public over the summer months.

This page was last reviewed on 19 January 2011.