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The aircraft was carrying out dusting operations and was on the second flight of the day. The pilot had done an obstacle evaluation flight prior to commencement of operations and had identified a row of mallee trees running north/south inside the eastern boundary fence. Running parallel to these trees in the paddock to be sprayed was a single power line. The pilot made his first run to the west flying through a gateway and then under the power line as there was sufficient clearance and it provided the optimal approach for this swath run. The reciprocal run was then commenced to the east and the pilot began his pull up with a view to clear both the power line and the trees. During this manoeuvre the pilot heard a light thud and believed that he had contacted the power line. As the aircraft appeared to be handling normally, the pilot elected to return to the airstrip to inspect for damage. Approximately 450 metres past the paddock fence, the aircraft suddenly pulled to the right in a steep nose down attitude and impacted the ground sustaining substantial damage. After evacuating the aircraft, the pilot observed that the power line was still attached to the aircraft landing gear and had not broken. He stated that the local Electricity Trust representative later informed him that the power line was of a three strand high tensile steel construction that was designed specifically not to be cut or broken. This was evidenced by the ineffectiveness of the aircraft cable cutting devices and the severe damage that they sustained without severing the power line.
Download Final Report
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General details
Date: 28 August 1997 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 9:00 CST  
 Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
 Occurrence type: Collision with terrain 
Release date: 10 October 1997 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: Minor 
Aircraft details
Aircraft model: 620A 
Aircraft registration: VH-WEA 
Sector: Piston 
Damage to aircraft: Destroyed 
Departure point:Blumson Farm SA
Destination:Blumson Farm SA
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Last update 28 October 2014