On 11 November 2015, a Jabiru J160 aircraft, Recreational Aviation Australia (RAAus) registration 19-7549, sustained a partial loss of engine power while enroute from Gunnedah to Cessnock, NSW. Unable to maintain altitude, the pilot elected to divert to Scone aerodrome. However, due to an increasing rate of descent, the pilot conducted an emergency landing into an open field near Scone. The aircraft landed without incident.
Blockage of the wing fuel tank filler vent cap was found during the subsequent inspection of the aircraft fuel system. Partial disassembly of the engine also identified that the number-four cylinder had sustained a broken inlet valve spring.
The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) commenced an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the engine power loss. CASA requested the technical assistance and oversight of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) in conducting a detailed examination of the occurrence aircraft and its engine. To facilitate this assistance, the ATSB initiated an external investigation under the provisions of the Transport Safety Investigation Act 2003.
A report detailing the examinations and ATSB's findings was provided to CASA, RAAus and the aircraft manufacturer, on 30 May 2016. Enquiries relating to the investigation should be directed to CASA on 131 757.
The information contained in this web update is released in accordance with section 25 of the Transport Safety Investigation Act 2003 and is derived from the initial investigation of the occurrence. Readers are cautioned that new evidence will become available as the investigation progresses that will enhance the ATSB's understanding of the accident as outlined in this web update. As such, no analysis or findings are included in this update.