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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

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