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On 3 November 2008, a SAAB Aircraft Company 340B-229 (SAAB), registered VH-ORX, was conducting a regular public transport flight from Orange, NSW to Sydney. The crew reported that, at about 0724 Eastern Daylight-saving Time, when tracking to join a 7 NM (13 km) final for runway 34 Right (34R), a passenger sustained minor injuries following a possible wake turbulence event that resulted in a momentary loss of control of the aircraft.

Examination of the available radar, meteorological and aircraft operational data identified that the momentary upset probably resulted from wake turbulence, which was generated by an Airbus Industrie A380-800 (A380) that was conducting a parallel approach to runway 34 Left (34L). There was a 35 kt left crosswind affecting both aircraft's approaches.

Airservices Australia (Airservices) reported to the SAAB operator that, as a result of this incident, they had introduced a number of interim minor changes to Sydney parallel runway operational procedures during high crosswind conditions. Those minor changes would have effect while Airservices carried out a review of A380 operations. In addition, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority has opened a regulatory change project to review and update wake turbulence separation information in the Manual of Standards Part 172.

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[ Download PDF: 147KB]
General details
Date: 03 November 2008 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 0724 ESuT  
Location   (show map):Sydney Aerodrome 160deg M 13KM Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: New South Wales Occurrence type: Loss of control 
Release date: 09 December 2009 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Serious Incident 
 Highest injury level: Minor 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: S.A.A.B. Aircraft Co 
Aircraft model: 340 
Aircraft registration: VH-ORX 
Serial number: 340B-293 
Type of operation: Air Transport Low Capacity 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Orange, NSW
Destination:Sydney, NSW
Minor: 0101
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Last update 14 November 2018