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When the pilot of VH-MXL lodged his flight plan, relevant details were inadvertently not transmitted to all necessary recipients by the AFTN system. As a result, Melbourne Approach was unaware of the planned track of the aircraft. The flight evidently proceeded normally until the pilot had reported his position at Port Phillip Heads to Melbourne Flight Service, and had requested an airways clearance. Essendon aerodrome was closed to Visual Flight Rules operations, and Melbourne Approach, after receiving details from Flight Service, cleared the aircraft to enter controlled airspace at 4000 feet on track from Port Phillip Heads to Essendon. This clearance was passed to the aircraft 11 minutes after the initial request. The Approach controller had not been informed that the aircraft was tracking via Frankston, a track which crossed the NDB instrument letdown pattern for Moorabbin. Shortly afterwards the aircraft was identified on radar by the Approach controller, and it became evident that the aircraft was in conflict with VH-TKM, which was conducting an instrument approach to Moorabbin. The airways clearance for VH-MXL was cancelled, but before positive action could be taken the aircraft passed within about half a kilometre of each other. It was considered that a number of communication breakdowns contributed to this incident. (a) The flight plan was incorrectly addressed. (b) The relevant Flight Service officer did not inform Melbourne Approach of the tracking details of the aircraft. (c) The Flight Service officer did not query the clearance as issued, although he was aware of the tracking details. (d) The pilot did not query the clearance, although it would have been virtually impossible for him to comply with the tracking instructions from his present position.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 23KB]
 
 
 
 
General details
Date: 02 January 1987 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 2000 Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
Location:Near Moorabbin Occurrence type:Loss of separation 
State: Victoria Occurrence class: Airspace 
Release date: 05 August 1987 Occurrence category: Incident 
Report status: Final Highest injury level: None 
 
Aircraft 1 details
Aircraft manufacturer: Cessna Aircraft Company 
Aircraft model: 182 
Aircraft registration: VH-MXL 
Type of operation: Private 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Parafield SA
Departure time:N/A
Destination:Essendon VIC
Aircraft 2 details
Aircraft manufacturer: Cessna Aircraft Company 
Aircraft model: 172 
Aircraft registration: VH-TKM 
Type of operation: Private 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Mangalore VIC
Destination:Moorabbin VIC
 
 
 
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