Aviation safety investigations & reports

Schleicher ASK13, VH-GPY, Tumbarumba NSW, 19 February 1988

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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The pilot was undergoing a check flight with an instructor. The strip in use was positioned at the top of a ridge, with landings being made into a 20 knot wind. The approach to the strip passed over powerlines, which were some 200 metres prior to the normal touchdown point. The aircraft was positioned on final approach with dive brakes fully extended. However, the pilot allowed the airspeed to decay and, despite repeated instructions from the instructor to increase the airspeed, he failed to respond. The aircraft sank below the required approach path. The instructor attempted to correct the undershoot by closing the dive brakes, but was too late to prevent the aircraft entering a downdraft created by the wind curling over the ridge. The aircraft struck the powerlines with the left wing and canopy, which shattered on impact. The pilot received an electric shock and burns to the head. The aircraft then fell to the ground and came to rest adjacent to the powerlines.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 22KB]
General details
Date: 19 February 1988   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1530 ESuT    
Location: Tumbarumba    
State: New South Wales    
Release date: 15 March 1988   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: Serious  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Alexander Schleicher Segelflugzeugbau  
Aircraft model ASK-13  
Aircraft registration VH-GPY  
Serial number 13009  
Type of operation Gliding  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Tumbarumba NSW  
Departure time 1520 ESuT  
Destination Tumbarumba NSW