On 7 September 2014 at about 1303 Australian Eastern Standard Time, a Piper Arrow, registered VH-KGP was completing a private, visual rules flight (VFR) from Orange to Wollongong, New South Wales. On board were a pilot and one passenger.

At about 10 NM north of Wollongong, the pilot broadcast an inbound call on the common traffic advisory frequency (CTAF). At the time, an instructor and student in an Evektor Sportstar registered 24-4467 were one of two aircraft conducting circuit training on runway 34.

The pilots of both KGP and 4467t communicated their respective position and intentions, and at 1306, the pilot of KGP called joining an extended downwind for runway 34.

When 4467 was on the crosswind leg for runway 34, the crew noted KGP on their left, about 100 metres ahead and at about the same level as them.

The instructor in 4467 initiated a climbing turn and shortly after, KGP passed underneath and just behind 4467.

This incident highlights the importance of using standard phraseology, and making extra calls when there is any uncertainty regarding another aircraft’s position when operating at non-controlled airports. As well as a requirement, it is good airmanship given the limitations of the See-and-Avoid Principle.


Aviation Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 38