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On 10 November 2007 at approximately 0830 Central Standard Time, a Cessna Aircraft Company 172N, registered VH-WLQ, with two pilots and a passenger on board departed Katherine, NT on a private, visual flight rules (VFR) flight to Tennant Creek. At about 1030, the aircraft struck a powerline which spanned the Stuart Highway 20 km north of Elliott. The aircraft's tail section was broken rearwards from the aft fuselage, rendering the aircraft uncontrollable and causing it to impact the highway in a steep nose-down attitude. The three occupants were fatally injured. The aircraft was destroyed.

There was no evidence of an aircraft or operational reason for the flight below 500 ft above ground level (AGL). Based on a lack of evidence to the contrary, the investigation concluded that the descent to, and flight at low level was probably as a result of a conscious decision by the pilots.

The investigation was unable to establish which of the pilots was flying the aircraft at the time of the accident.

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General details
Date: 10 November 2007 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1135 CST  
Location   (show map):20 km north of Elliott Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Northern Territory Occurrence type: Wirestrike 
Release date: 30 October 2008 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: Fatal 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Cessna Aircraft Company 
Aircraft model: 172 
Aircraft registration: VH-WLQ 
Serial number: 17271888 
Type of operation: Private 
Damage to aircraft: Destroyed 
Departure point:Katherine, NT
Departure time:0830 CST
Destination:Tennant Creek, Northern Territory
Fatal: 1203
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Last update 18 April 2018