Aviation safety investigations & reports

Total power loss involving a Robinson R22, VH-STK, 155 km SSW of Normanton aerodrome, Qld. on 13 November 2013

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On 13 November 2013, the pilot of a Robinson R22 helicopter, registered VH STK, was conducting aerial mustering on a property about 155 km SSW of Normanton, Queensland.

At about 1249 Eastern Standard Time, the helicopter was hovering behind a mob of cattle, when the pilot felt the helicopter jerking. He landed and conducted a magneto check. He selected the left magneto and the engine rapidly lost power. He then selected the right magneto and the engine ran normally. He reselected the magneto switch to ‘both’ and attempted to contact the property manager.

He was unable to make contact with the manager and elected to take-off. Once airborne, he was able to communicate with the manager via UHF radio. He turned the helicopter towards a road and commenced an approach to land on the road.

At about 20 ft above ground level, the engine stopped. The pilot lowered the collective and flared the helicopter for landing. On impact, the helicopter spun around 180°. The helicopter was substantially damaged and the pilot was uninjured.


 Aviation Short Investigation Bulletin - Issue 25

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 300KB]
Alternate: [Download  DOCX: 807KB]


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General details
Date: 13 November 2013   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1253 EST   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): 155 km SW Normanton Aerodrome    
State: Queensland   Occurrence type: Engine failure or malfunction  
Release date: 20 January 2014   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Robinson Helicopter Co  
Aircraft model R22  
Aircraft registration VH-STK  
Serial number 4581  
Type of operation Aerial Work  
Sector Helicopter  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Last update 14 November 2018