William 'damaged RAF training plane'

The British Ministry of Defence played down reports today that Prince William damaged an aircraft during his RAF training.

William grounded the Tucano aircraft after flicking a switch that caused the aeroplane to overheat, the Daily Express said.

But the MoD said “no damage was done” as a result of the incident, which happened as the heir to the throne underwent a 12-week pilot training course last year.

A ministry spokesman said: “No damage was done to an aircraft during Flight Lieutenant Wales’ Tucano training whilst on attachment to the RAF.”

Joe Watt, manager of a firm which services Tucanos flown by the RAF, said William inadvertently “overcooked the turbo”, leading to the propeller-driven plane being sent in for servicing.

York-based Mr Watt said: “He flicked the wrong switch on shutdown, and overcooked the turbo. I think he switched it back on.

“He’s not the only one, we’ve had two or three.”

A Buckingham Palace spokesman said the aircraft’s engine was not damaged during the incident.

William earned his RAF “wings” in April last year, becoming the fourth successive generation of the monarchy to qualify as an RAF pilot.

He is currently training to become a search and rescue helicopter pilot.

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