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On 1 April 2014, a Piper PA-31 aircraft, registered VH-XGW (XGW), departed Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, on an aeromedical flight to Bankstown, New South Wales, under the instrument flight rules (IFR). The pilot conducted a WATLE Five Arrival to Bankstown.

At about 1940 Eastern Daylight-savings Time (EDT), a Piper PA-28 aircraft, registered VH-IBX (IBX) departed Bankstown on a training flight to Orange, New South Wales, under the night visual flight rules (NVFR), with a pilot-under-instruction and a flight instructor on board. IBX took off from runway 11 and climbed to 1,500 ft AMSL before departing the Bankstown zone at 3 NM, on climb to 2,300 ft AMSL. The pilot took up a heading to intercept the 275 radial from Sydney.

Sydney ATC advised the pilot of XGW that a VFR aircraft had departed Bankstown and was about 5 NM away and at 1,600 ft AMSL. The pilot responded that he had the aircraft in sight. At about 1944 the pilot of XGW contacted the Bankstown Tower controller who instructed the pilot to join final for a straight in approach to runway 11 and advised that departing traffic was a Cherokee in his ‘1 o’clock, becoming 12 o’clock’ about 2 NM away, and at 2,300 ft AMSL. The pilot of XGW replied that he had the traffic sighted.

When at 2,300 ft AMSL and about 6 NM from Bankstown, the instructor of IBX heard the controller give XGW the traffic and sighted XGW. The instructor of IBX then observed the landing light of XGW come on, immediately took control of IBX from the pilot-under-instruction, and conducted a climbing turn to the left. XGW passed about 200 ft below IBX.

This incident highlights the need for pilots operating under the visual flight rules (VFR) to maintain adequate separation from other aircraft.

 

Aviation Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 32

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General details
Date: 01 April 2014 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1945 ESuT Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
Location   (show map):13 km W of Bankstown Airport Occurrence type:Near collision 
State: New South Wales Occurrence class: Airspace 
Release date: 14 July 2014 Occurrence category: Serious Incident 
Report status: Final Highest injury level: None 
 
Aircraft 1 details
Aircraft manufacturer: Piper Aircraft Corp 
Aircraft model: PA-28 
Aircraft registration: VH-IBX 
Serial number: 28-7615098 
Type of operation: Flying Training 
Sector: Piston 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Bankstown, NSW
Destination:Orange, NSW
Aircraft 2 details
Aircraft manufacturer: Piper Aircraft Corp 
Aircraft model: PA-31 
Aircraft registration: VH-XGW 
Serial number: 31P-8414001 
Type of operation: Aerial Work 
Sector: Piston 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Canberra, ACT
Destination:Bankstown, NSW
 
 
 
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Last update 25 February 2015