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On 24 March 2010, at about 1235 Eastern Standard Time, a Cessna Aircraft Company 208B (Caravan), registered VH-WZJ, was descending through cloud inbound to Horn Island aerodrome, Queensland (Qld), when the pilot received an aural traffic warning on the Caravan's traffic advisory system. The system indicated that an aircraft was 200 ft below and 3 NM (5.6 km) ahead of the Caravan. Communications were established with the pilot of a Pilatus Britten-Norman BN2A-26 (Islander), registered VH-WRR, who was transiting the area, and was confirmed as the conflicting aircraft.

In response, the pilot of the Caravan reported commencing a climb, and at this point observed the Islander pass to the right of the aircraft. The pilot of the Islander also reported sighting the Caravan pass above and to the right of his aircraft. It was estimated that the distance between the two aircraft was about 50 m. As a result of this incident, the following safety actions are being considered:

  • The operator of the Islander is considering changing its procedures so that all flights conducted within the Torres Strait, in marginal weather conditions, are carried out under instrument flight rules (IFR).
  • The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) is reviewing the two discrete frequencies currently assigned to the Horn Island and Northern Peninsula aerodrome Common Traffic Advisory Frequencies (Radio) ((CTAF(R)).
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General details
Date: 24 March 2010 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1235 EST  
Location   (show map):37 km NE of Horn Island aerodrome Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Queensland Occurrence type: Near collision 
Release date: 29 June 2010 Occurrence class: Airspace 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Serious Incident 
 Highest injury level: None 
Aircraft 1 details
Aircraft manufacturer: Cessna Aircraft Company 
Aircraft model: 208 
Aircraft registration: VH-WZJ 
Serial number: 208B1108 
Type of operation: Air Transport Low Capacity 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Warraber Island, Qld
Destination:Horn Island, Qld
Aircraft 2 details
Aircraft manufacturer: Pilatus Britten-Norman Ltd 
Aircraft model: BN2 
Aircraft registration: VH-WRR 
Serial number: 882 
Type of operation: Charter 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Northern Penninsula aerodrome, Qld
Destination:Saibai Island, Qld
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Last update 18 April 2018