On 13 July 2014, the pilot of a Cessna 172 aircraft, registered VH-EEC, conducted a private flight from The Lily to Narrikup aeroplane landing areas (ALA), Western Australia, with two passengers on board.

At about 1320 Western Standard Time, the pilot broadcast an inbound call when about 10 NM north-east of Narrikup at about 6,500 ft above mean sea level (AMSL). The pilot elected to conduct an approach to runway 06 and overflew the runway at about 1,900 ft AMSL. He observed the windsock which did not indicate any significant crosswind. The aircraft then descended to circuit height and joined on the crosswind leg for runway 06.

When established on final for runway 06, the pilot reported that he had selected two stages of flap and had the aircraft stabilised at about 65 kt. When about 50 ft above ground level, the pilot reported that the aircraft encountered a wind gust which carried the aircraft about 30 m to the right. The pilot moved the aileron controls into wind and applied full power to commence a go-around; however the aircraft’s right wing collided with trees on the right side of the landing area. The pilot reported that the right wing may have stalled as he applied full right aileron. The aircraft fell to the ground resulting in substantial damage.

This incident highlights the importance of being ready to conduct an early go-around when a pilot is not completely satisfied that a safe landing can be made.


Aviation Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 34