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A report was received from a member of the public concerning the approach flown by VH-HYC into Coolangatta. The report stated that the aircraft appeared from cloud and rain at a very low altitude, well west of the required track, and in an abnormally high nose attitude. It then commenced a rapid left bank accompanied by an increase in engine thrust to regain track and continue the approach to landing. The reporter considered that this had been a highly dangerous method of approaching Runway 14. Other reports were received alleging that the aircraft had landed heavily at Coolangatta. Following receipt of the complaint, the aircraft technical crew was interviewed. The crew reported that the approach was flown by the First Officer and proceeded normally to the Minimum Descent Altitude of 650 feet. When visual reference to the ground was not established approaching the Missed Approach Point, the First Officer increased engine power to commence the Missed Approach Procedure. However,as he did so, the Captain gained visual reference to the ground, took control of the aircraft, and continued to landing. The crew reported that the landing was normal. A readout of the aircraft's Digital Flight Data Recorder during the period of the approach and landing was completed. The readout showed that the approach had been flown in accordance with the published procedure for a pilot interpreted instrument approach to the runway. It also indicated that the approach was stabilised and that from the Minimum Descent Altitude, the aircraft was manoeuvred smoothly to achieve precise alignment with the runway. The landing was smooth with a light touchdown and there were no excessive deceleration forces. The investigation concluded that there was no evidence to support the allegations concerning the approach and landing, either from the aircraft technical crew, or the Flight Data Recorder readout.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 23KB]
General details
Date: 24 February 1990 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1210  
Location:Coolangatta Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Queensland Occurrence type: Miscellaneous - Other 
Release date: 02 March 1990 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Incident 
 Highest injury level: None 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Airbus Industrie 
Aircraft model: A320 
Aircraft registration: VH-HYC 
Serial number: 24 
Type of operation: Air Transport High Capacity 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Sydney NSW
Departure time:N/K
Destination:Coolangatta QLD
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