Aviation safety investigations & reports

Controlled flight into terrain involving a Robinson R22, VH-LZR, 100 km E Mataranka Township (ALA), NT, on 10 February 2014

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On 10 February 2014, at about 1500 Central Standard Time, the pilot of a Robinson R22 helicopter, registered VH-LZR, commenced take-off for a private local flight from a property about 100 km east of Mataranka, Northern Territory.

As the helicopter became airborne heading to the south-east, the pilot sighted an object moving to his right. At about 10 ft above ground level, the pilot was distracted looking outside the door at the object and the helicopter collided with a tree. The helicopter sustained substantial damage and the pilot was uninjured.

This incident shows that distractions can have a significant impact on flight safety.

Aviation Short Investigation Bulletin - Issue 28

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 122KB]
Alternate: [Download  DOCX: 190KB]


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General details
Date: 10 February 2014   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1500 CST   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): Mataranka Township (ALA), east 100 km (Flying Fox Station)    
State: Northern Territory   Occurrence type: CFIT  
Release date: 27 March 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-LZR  
Serial number 2629  
Type of operation Private  
Sector Helicopter  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Flying Fox Station, NT  
Last update 14 November 2018