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The aircraft was carrying out a night flight to a strip lit by portable fluorescent lights. These lights were spaced 190 metres apart along the length of the strip. During the approach the left main gear struck rising ground, which formed the end of the built-up strip surface, approximately 29 metres short of the threshold. The left main gear drag brace failed and the oleo leg was bent, however, the gear did not collapse and the landing was completed without further incident.

The investigation revealed that the strip had been lengthened but the operator had not been notified of the change. The available portable lights had been evenly spaced along the length of the strip. However, due to insufficient lights being available, the spacing between them exceeded double the prescribed spacing and the threshold was inadequately marked. The pilot was not aware of the length and spacing anomalies. Consequently, because of these anomalies, he was presented with a false perspective of the angle of approach and misjudged the approach.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 22KB]
 
 
 
 
General details
Date: 20 February 1987 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 304 Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
Location:Cervantes  
State: Western Australia Occurrence class: Operational 
Release date: 15 June 1987 Occurrence category: Accident 
Report status: Final Highest injury level: None 
 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Piper Aircraft Corp 
Aircraft model: PA-31 
Aircraft registration: VH-HFD 
Type of operation: Aerial Work 
Damage to aircraft: Substantial 
Departure point:Jandakot WA
Departure time:0304
Destination:Cervantes WA
 
 
 
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