Aviation safety investigations & reports

Auster III, Model F, VH-GCV, Latrobe Valley, Vic, 14 January 1974

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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The aircraft was observed to take-off towards the west in calm conditions and, almost immediately after it became airborne, the starboard wing lowered and a climbing turn to the right was commenced. As the turn progressed the angle of bank increased until, after the aircraft had turned through approximately 90 degrees, it was estimated to be about 45 degrees. At this stage, at what appeared to be a low airspeed, the starboard wing struck the top of a tall pine tree situated about 125 metres to the north of the strip from which the take-off was made. The aircraft then descended steeply and struck the ground in a nose down attitude some 35 metres north of the tree. Examination of the wreckage disclosed no evidence of any pre-existing defect or malfunction of the aircraft which may have contributed to the accident. The pilot has said that he suffered a loss of memory and is unable to recall the circumstances of the flight or the accident.
Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 133KB]
General details
Date: 14 January 1974   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1105 ESuT    
Location: Latrobe Valley    
State: New South Wales    
Release date: 21 October 1975   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: Serious  
Last update 01 April 2011