Aviation safety investigations & reports

Beech D17-RM Staggerwing, VH-BBL, Sommariva - 35 km East of Charleville QLD, 23 April 1988

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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The pilot was competing in the Hinkler Bi-Centennial Air Race. Earlier in the day the aircraft had made a forced landing near Roma due to a propeller oil seal failure. Following repairs by the owner/pilot the aircraft departed Roma for Charleville. At approximately 1740 hours the pilot made a PAN call and advised he was shutting the engine down due to another propeller oil seal failure. During the subsequent forced landing the pilot had to swing the aircraft left to avoid a tree. The aircraft hit an anthill, causing the landing gear to collapse. The pilot received facial lacerations. Investigation revealed that the moulded leather propeller seal had failed in the area of the moulding. It could not be determined if the second propeller seal failure was associated with the change of the seal following the first propeller seal failure. This accident was not the subject of an on-scene investigation.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 22KB]
General details
Date: 23 April 1988   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1740    
Location: Sommariva - 35 km East of Charleville    
State: Queensland   Occurrence type: Propeller/rotor malfunction  
Release date: 10 January 1989   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: Minor  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Beech Aircraft Corp  
Aircraft model 17  
Aircraft registration VH-BBL  
Serial number 67755  
Type of operation Private  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Roma QLD  
Departure time N/A  
Destination Charleville QLD