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The aircraft took off from Shay Gap under a very low overcast with the intention of proceeding to Nullagine som 85 miles to the south. The low cloud persisted throughout the route and the tops of hills in the area, at a general level of about 750 feet above mean sea level, were enveloped in cloud and mist. Before taking off from Shay Gap the pilot called the Flight Service Unit at Port Hedland by radio and requested the winds forecast for the local area. Port Hedland did not respond but the aircraft calls were acknowledged by Derby Flight Service Unit. The pilot advised Derby when the aircraft departed Shay Gap at 0637 hours WST and he again requested the forecast winds for the area in which he was operating. The wreckage of the aircraft was found by a searching aircraft at 0800 hours on the following morning. The aircraft had struck the ground at a height of approximately 780 feet above sea level near the crest of a ridge, apparently whilst in substantially level flight and under control. The accident site was some 23 miles south of Shay Gap on the direct track to Nullagine. The aircraft had been on a southerly heading and probably at normal cruising speed at the time of the initial impact with the ground.
Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 111KB]
General details
Date: 01 June 1971 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 0647 WST  
Location:Marble Bar Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Western Australia Occurrence type: Collision with terrain 
Release date: 09 June 1972 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: Fatal 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Beech Aircraft Corp 
Aircraft model: 55 
Aircraft registration: VH-DRT 
Type of operation: Charter 
Damage to aircraft: Destroyed 
Departure point:Shay Gap
Departure time:0637
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Last update 13 May 2014