A microlight pilot has been prosecuted by the CAA for flying through Manchester airport’s controlled airspace on 20 January 2017, causing significant delays to commercial aircraft.

Robert Bawn, pilot of the Quik GT450 microlight was in the Manchester Control Zone – class D airspace – for 25 minutes causing arrivals into Manchester airport to be suspended, and fifteen passenger aircraft delayed. Manchester’s ATC tried to contact the pilot via radio at the time but Mr Bawn did not have a functioning radio and was not carrying any paper charts or electronic navigation aids. He came forward following an appeal for information by ATC.

Mr Bawn was fined £1,165 and ordered to pay the CAA costs of £750. Speaking after the case, Rob Gratton, Principal Airspace Regulator at the CAA, said: “This is yet another example of a pilot being unprepared for a flight. It is essential all pilots undertake proper pre-flight planning by carefully plotting their entire journey. This incident, which caused huge stress for air traffic controllers… could have been easily avoided.”

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