Aviation safety investigations & reports

Piper PA25-235, VH-SPB, 24 km North of St Arnaud VIC, 16 November 1985

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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At the end of each spray run to the east, the aircraft was flown under a power line before the turn to change direction was commenced. Several runs had been completed when the pilot climbed the aircraft to commence the turn and the aircraft collided with the power line. The pilot dumped the remainder of the load and the aircraft continued to fly, trailing the power line. After travelling a short distance the aircraft apparently stalled and struck the ground in a nose down attitude. A fire broke out and completely engulfed the wreckage. The pilot subsequently advised that he had temporarily overlooked the presence of the power line. It was probable that on this particular spray run a pole supporting the wire was no longer in the pilot's field of vision. The severed wire became entangled around the right wing and lift strut, resulting in bending of the strut and probably inducing stalling of the wing.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 22KB]
General details
Date: 16 November 1985   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1115 aprx    
Location: 24 km North of St Arnaud    
State: Victoria   Occurrence type: Wirestrike  
Release date: 07 February 1986   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: Serious  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Piper Aircraft Corp  
Aircraft model PA-25  
Aircraft registration VH-SPB  
Type of operation Aerial Work  
Damage to aircraft Destroyed  
Departure point Donald Vic  
Departure time 1115 aprx  
Destination Donald Vic