On 27 August 2012, at about 1330 Eastern Standard Time a Piper PA-28 aircraft, registered VH-BZE, departed Moorabbin Airport on a private flight to Colac, Victoria. The pilot was the only person on board. The pilot decided to return to Moorabbin due to the severity of the turbulence being experienced.
While turning onto final for runway 35L at Moorabbin, VH-BZE drifted through the runway centreline. The pilot was having difficulty controlling the aircraft and requested a late change in runway to 35R. At the same time, a Cessna 172 aircraft, registered VH-EPB with an instructor and student on board, was established on finals for runway 35R. The two aircraft came within close proximity of each other.
This investigation is a reminder that personal minimums, when set, provide a safety buffer between the skills required for a flight and the skills available through training, experience, currency, and proficiency.