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The pilot was assisting a ground party in mustering operations. He was pushing a group of bulls some 700 metres from the ground party when they saw the aircraft break away to the West, presumably to chase a breakaway bull. They then heard a dull thud and the noise from the engine of the helicopter stopped suddenly. The helicopter was found some 10 metres from the base of a six metre high dead tree. The pilot was seriously injured in the accident but he was later able to recall that there was, in his opinion, no fault with the aircraft and he had simply flown into the dead tree without seeing it. On site investigation confirmed the tree strike and showed that at the time of the collision, the aircarft was heading in a westerly direction into the low sun and dust . The tree struck by the helicopter was also disguised by another tree behind it. At the time of completing the report, the pilot was still in intensive care and unable to be interviewed.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 22KB]
General details
Date: 01 September 1989 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1730  
Location:240 km NE Katherine Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Northern Territory  
Release date: 14 September 1989  
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: Serious 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Robinson Helicopter Co 
Aircraft model: R22 
Aircraft registration: VH-PYG 
Serial number: 390 
Type of operation: Aerial Work 
Sector: Helicopter 
Damage to aircraft: Substantial 
Departure point:Bulman Station NT
Departure time:N/K
Destination:Bulman Station NT
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