Aviation safety investigations & reports

Piper PA25-235 Pawnee, VH-OMA, 15 km northwest of Tumby Bay SA, 21 June 1990

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 23KB]

The aircraft was engaged in the final stages of a pasture spraying operation. The area of operation was a small field surrounded by trees. A powerline was located beyond the trees at the southern end of the field. After committing the aircraft to a low level pass towards the south, the pilot remembered the partially concealed powerline but was unsure of its exact position. When the powerline became visible against the skyline, the pilot realised that he would be unable to pull up over it and elected to fly through the tree tops beneath the powerline. Right wing impact with the trees caused the aircraft to yaw and the rudder to strike the powerline as the aircraft passed beneath it. Despite right wing and rudder damage, the pilot retained control and landed the aircraft in the adjacent paddock where he evacuated the aircraft without assistance or injury. Examination of the aircraft determined that there were no pre-existing mechanical defects, abnormalities or damage which can be considered as factors in, or contributory to, this accident. The pilot acknowledged that he did not conduct a specific check of powerline positions before commencing the clean-up run. The pilot had re-commenced agricultural flying, three weeks prior to the accident, after approximately 9 months of fish spotting operations.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 23KB]
General details
Date: 21 June 1990   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1400    
Location: 15 km northwest of Tumby Bay    
State: South Australia   Occurrence type: Wirestrike  
Release date: 18 June 1991   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Piper Aircraft Corp  
Aircraft model PA-25  
Aircraft registration VH-OMA  
Serial number 25-7405792  
Type of operation Aerial Work  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Tumby Bay SA  
Departure time 1330  
Destination Tumby Bay SA