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As the aircraft became airborne the pilot heard a loud bang and upon inspection noticed that the left flap was holed and buckled. The elevator trim had also been damaged and was immovable. This resulted in the aircraft tending to fly in a nose high attitude. The pilot assumed that one of the mainwheels had been dislodged and decided to fly the aircraft to Townsville where emergency services were available. Enroute he was contacted by radio from Scartwater Station and advised that the aircraft was missing a mainwheel. After the pilot received advice from a flying instructor, the aircraft was successfully landed at Townsville. An inspection of the aircraft revealed that the left landing gear torque link bolt had failed as a result of fatigue cracking which had originated from a poorly machined lubrication groove.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 22KB]
General details
Date: 21 September 1986 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 602  
Location:Scartwater Station, 130km SSE of Charters Towers Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Queensland  
Release date: 19 May 1987  
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: None 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Piper Aircraft Corp 
Aircraft model: PA-32 
Aircraft registration: VH-PRM 
Type of operation: Business 
Damage to aircraft: Substantial 
Departure point:Scartwater Station QLD
Departure time:0602
Destination:Hanging Rock, 20km South-west of Scartwater Station QLD
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