The pilot, an enthusiastic light aircraft owner, had organised a week end "fly in" to his airstrip at Devon Downs, which was attended by light aircraft pilots and parachutists together with their families and friends. During the day a programme of general flying was carried out and late in the afternoon the pilot flew to nearby Scrubby Flat with the two passengers to pick up some sleeping bags. The passenger in the right hand front seat was also a qualified pilot but the right hand control column had been removed earlier in the day to permit parachute dropping and had not been replaced. The people assembled at the airstrip at Devon Downs first sighted the aircraft on its return as it climbed up from the nearby Murray River valley which, in this area, is bordered by 200 feet high cliffs. The aircraft then made a shallow descent and flew along the strip on a heading of about 250 degrees, at a very low height. At the western end of the strip the aircraft pulled up steeply to between 200 and 300 feet above the ground and began a "wingover" turn manoeuvre to the left. As the turn progressed to the point at which the wings were steeply banked and the fuselage approximately horizontal, the spectators saw the aircraft falter, then the nose dropped and the aircraft dived into the ground at a very steep angle. A fierce fire broke out immediately on impact and the aircraft was completely destroyed.
|Date:||03 October 1970||Investigation status:||Completed|
|State:||South Australia||Occurrence type:||Loss of control|
|Release date:||28 June 1971||Occurrence category:||Accident|
|Report status:||Final||Highest injury level:||Fatal|