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The pilot had planned the direct track for the flight from Cockatoo Island to Derby at 5500 feet above sea level. When the pilot gave his DEPARTURE call he amended his cruising level to below 5000 feet. No further calls were received from the aircraft. The Cockatoo Island work boat was 56 kilometres north-north-west of Derby, and approximately 20 kilometres west of the direct track between Cockatoo Island and Derby. The crew of the boat observed an aircraft approaching at very low level. The aircraft passed over the boat approximately 5-7 metres above the deck, and entered a right hand turn. During the turn the right wing tip struck the water causing the aircraft to cartwheel and crash about 400 metres from the boat. The fuselage broke open on impact and the occupants were subsequently rescued by the crew of the boat. The pilot declined to provide any information which might have clarified the circumstances of the accident, however, available information indicates that he carried out an unauthorized low pass over the boat. During the turn following the low pass, he misjudged the aircraft's height and the right wing tip struck the water.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 22KB]
General details
Date: 22 May 1989 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1350  
Location:56 km north-west Derby Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Western Australia Occurrence type: Collision with terrain 
Release date: 01 May 1990 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: Serious 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Pilatus Britten-Norman Ltd 
Aircraft model: BN2 
Aircraft registration: VH-BSN 
Serial number: 3005 
Type of operation: Charter 
Damage to aircraft: Destroyed 
Departure point:Cockatoo Island WA
Departure time:1331
Destination:Derby WA
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