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Old 30 Jun 2015, 09:54 (Ref:3554851)   #1
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Maria de Villota HSE report

Autosport have requested information under the freedom of information act, on the HSE report into Maria's tragic accident in testing at Duxford.

Although the HSE determined that no further action action will be taken against the parties involved, some aspects of the report should make uncomfortable reading for those managing the test on the day and more widely for F1 teams to note.

Saying that Maria was poorly prepared for the test is something of a understatement...

'The straightline test took place at Duxford Aerodrome on July 3 2012, a day after de Villota had a seat-fitting in the car.

According to the report, the Spaniard said she could not operate the clutch when the steering was on full-lock but was told "it does not matter as there would be no need for full-lock during the straightline test".
She was also given notes from the race engineer ahead of the drive, but these did not feature information about stopping the car or "which gears should be selected when arriving at the pitlane".'


You can read more details below, but clearly unfamiliarity with the cars systems and procedures coupled with driving the car in an unregulated environment, lead to an entirely avoidable accident.


Perhaps the 'best' quote is 'It also said the team was "relying on the skill and experience of the driver".' This was someone who had a seat fitting the day before and had never driven the car and had very limited experience of driving an F1 car at all!


Great Shame and what a waste.


http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/119752
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Old 30 Jun 2015, 17:17 (Ref:3554946)   #2
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cant help but wonder if its better that we dont find out the details.
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Old 30 Jun 2015, 17:40 (Ref:3554958)   #3
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I saw that report yesterday and felt that it was actually pretty damning for the reasons you pointed out. My perception earlier was that they were very much blaming her for "doing the wrong thing" (not using correct procedure to stop the car). Sadly, I think that blame can be spread around a bit more. It all sounds like a lot of failure to communicate, bad assumptions and some unrealistic expectations. You can only hope that all racing teams (F1 or otherwise) use it as a learning experience vs. it just being swept under the rug and not talked about.

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Old 1 Jul 2015, 04:52 (Ref:3555098)   #4
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Similarity De Villota & Bianchi Marussia Accidents

Still remarkable IMO.


http://www.fia.com/news/accident-panel

7. During the 2 seconds Bianchiís car was leaving the track and traversing the run-off area, he applied both throttle and brake together, using both feet. The FailSafe algorithm is designed to over-ride the throttle and cut the engine, but was inhibited by the Torque Coordinator, which controls the rear Brake-by-Wire system. Bianchiís Marussia has a unique design of BBW, which proved to be incompatible with the FailSafe settings.

8. The fact that the FailSafe did not disqualify the engine torque requested by the driver may have affected the impact velocity; it has not been possible to reliably quantify this. However, it may be that Bianchi was distracted by what was happening and the fact that his front wheels had locked, and been unable to steer the car such that it missed the crane.

Would seem to have been a direct repeat of what happened to Maria De Villota


She sustained her injuries after her car "suddenly accelerated" into the back of the support lorry, according to witnesses.

Marussia says it carried out a detailed analysis of the accident, and an external forensic investigation was also conducted. The results have been passed on to the Health and Safety Executive.


http://www.bbc.com/sport/0/formula1/18854061


"BBC Cambridgeshire presenter Chris Mann, who witnessed the crash, said the car was slowing down when it "suddenly accelerated" into the back of the lorry"

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-c...shire-18685789
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Old 5 Jul 2015, 23:55 (Ref:3556027)   #5
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Can the full HSE report be found online if possible?
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Old 6 Jul 2015, 09:14 (Ref:3556119)   #6
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Can the full HSE report be found online if possible?
I don't believe that the report was published, and only parts of the report were released to Autosport after they made a Freedom of Information request to the HSE.
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Old 6 Jul 2015, 09:59 (Ref:3556130)   #7
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I don't believe that the report was published, and only parts of the report were released to Autosport after they made a Freedom of Information request to the HSE.

I assumed that was the case but no harm in asking. Hopefully the full report gets released in due time. Disturbing to read but at the same time intriguing as to what actually happened on that day pre incident and post incident.
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Old 6 Jul 2015, 18:51 (Ref:3556248)   #8
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I know it was a straight line test, but does that really mean that it's ok to send out a driver without a functioning steering column???
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Old 7 Jul 2015, 03:36 (Ref:3556345)   #9
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I know it was a straight line test, but does that really mean that it's ok to send out a driver without a functioning steering column???
And then subject to confidentiality. All HSE reports should have to be published, the taxpayers pay for them, so the public should have access to the results.
Hopefully something learned will stop the next tragedy!

Like it is unacceptable to have a malfunctioning steering column, and have a tail lift in the path of car!
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Old 9 Jul 2015, 20:26 (Ref:3557082)   #10
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I believe she should have never been in this car to begin with, but in motorsport money buys you a seat and that's the way it is sometimes and probably always will be. She just did not have the talent and capability and was in way over her head. These cars are weapons like a fighter jet and not to be trifled with. Add in a disorganized, under budget team and these things will happen.
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Old 9 Jul 2015, 20:51 (Ref:3557091)   #11
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I know it was a straight line test, but does that really mean that it's ok to send out a driver without a functioning steering column???
I don't believe that the report stated that the steering column was not functioning. What it said was that she complained that she couldn't use the clutch with the steering on full lock, not that it wastn't working.

The teams response was that she should not be needing to use full lock as it was a straight line test, obviously with minimal turning.

As others have said, I think that she (or her backers) bought this opportunity to drive the car, the team grabbed at the chance to capitalise, and she was unprepared for the test.
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Old 9 Jul 2015, 23:09 (Ref:3557133)   #12
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And then subject to confidentiality. All HSE reports should have to be published, the taxpayers pay for them, so the public should have access to the results.
Hopefully something learned will stop the next tragedy!

Like it is unacceptable to have a malfunctioning steering column, and have a tail lift in the path of car!
The public do have access, but you have to make the request.
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Old 10 Jul 2015, 04:19 (Ref:3557180)   #13
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I believe she should have never been in this car to begin with, but in motorsport money buys you a seat and that's the way it is sometimes and probably always will be. She just did not have the talent and capability and was in way over her head. These cars are weapons like a fighter jet and not to be trifled with. Add in a disorganized, under budget team and these things will happen.
I disagree... For what I believe was a straight line aero test, I expect anyone who could fit in the car and had any experience in upper level open wheel cars AND with proper preparation likely would have done just fine. In her case the preparation is what was missing. As reported above, it sounded like amateur hour vs professional F1.

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Old 10 Jul 2015, 05:48 (Ref:3557201)   #14
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It was just a perfect storm of small issues all happening at once. A tragic accident. Hopefully lessons have been learned.

A driver not fully briefed on vehicle operation.
A software design that negated basic operational expected behaviour.
An unsafe work area.

This probably would have happened to any other driver brought in with the exception of the two regular drivers.
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Old 14 Jul 2015, 13:05 (Ref:3558451)   #15
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had a bit of a think about this.

if this was out in the real world and she was a professional driver in another area of work, then i hate to say it but it would have been her "fault" for driving a dodgy vehicle or not preparing herself adeqately to drive it safely and then having an accident.

the company must provide a vehicle that works but if they don't the onus is on the driver to hand the keys back and go "it failed my daily checks, i'm not accepting it" or find another driver and go "mate, i need some help, i've never driven a gearbox and clutch like this before. can you come and spend a few minutes giving me some basic pointers?". if you drive into something when you're parking up it's your fault for not getting out and asking them to move it/not hitting it in the first place. if you were already aware that the clutch was being odd you make allowances for that eg take more space, get some advice from an experienced driver about how to mitigate it or you park it up and call out the recovery boys.

f1 is slightly different, but not at the same time. if the driver enters out into the field without knowing how to drive something the authorities would come down on them like a tonne of bricks should something happen, but be critical of the company for not making information available for drivers. sounds rather like whats happened in the report.
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