On 4 June 2013, a Cessna 210 aircraft, registered VH-ZMT, departed Elcho Island for Ramingining aerodrome, Northern Territory. The purpose of the flight was to pick up a passenger and return to Elcho Island about 15 minutes prior to last light.

The aircraft arrived at Ramingining and joined the circuit. The pilot completed his pre-landing checks, but inadvertently omitted to lower the landing gear and confirm that it had been extended. When on final, the pilot could not recall conducting his final checks.

During the landing, the pilot reported hearing a scraping sound and noticed that the propeller had come into contact with the ground. He then realised that the aircraft had landed with the landing gear retracted. The pilot stated that the aircraft’s landing gear warning horn did not sound at any stage during the landing.

The pilot reported that he had a difficult passenger on board one of his previous flights and was 20 minutes behind schedule. As a result, the pilot reported that he was keen to get home, which had distracted him somewhat during the flight.

As a result of this occurrence, the aircraft operator has advised the ATSB that they have issued a Flight Operation Service Notification to all pilots highlighting the requirement to follow checklists, including the pre-landing checklist.

This incident highlights the impact distractions can have on aircraft operations and the need for pilots to remain vigilant when completing checklists.

Aviation Short Investigation Bulletin - Issue 23