Aviation safety investigations & reports

Loss of control and collision with terrain involving Cessna 182S, VH-PCO, Tooradin Airfield (ALA), Vic., on 20 March 2016

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed

Final Report

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On the morning of 20 March 2016, the pilot of a Cessna 182S aircraft, registered VH-PCO, prepared to conduct a scenic flight from Tooradin, Victoria, to Wonthaggi, Wilsons Promontory and return, with three passengers on board.

The pilot reported that the flight was normal. At about 1320 Eastern Daylight-saving Time, the aircraft returned to Tooradin, and the pilot elected to join the circuit on a right downwind for runway 04. While on the downwind circuit leg, the pilot and the front seat passenger observed a windsock, which indicated that the wind was blowing straight down the runway, and elected to continue the approach.

After turning onto final approach, the pilot selected full flap (40°). The pilot reported that as the main wheels touched down, about 300 m beyond the runway threshold, the aircraft veered left off the runway onto the grass.

The pilot immediately commenced a go-around by applying full power and raising the aircraft’s nose in an attempt to clear aircraft parked on the grass ahead. The stall warning horn sounded, and the pilot assessed that the aircraft was not climbing and that its landing gear may collide with the parked aircraft.

The pilot therefore reduced the power to idle and the aircraft landed heavily to the north of the runway. The aircraft then struck three other aircraft that were parked on a grassed area between the runway and a sealed taxiway.

The aircraft sustained substantial damage and the pilot and passengers were uninjured.

The Flight Safety Foundation Approach-and-landing accident reduction tool kit Briefing note 6.1 – Being prepared to go around, stated that the importance of being go-around-prepared and go-around-minded must be emphasised because a go-around is not a frequent occurrence.


Aviation Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 49

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General details
Date: 20 March 2016   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1324 EDT   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): Tooradin Airfield (ALA)    
State: Victoria   Occurrence type: Collision with terrain  
Release date: 27 July 2016   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Cessna Aircraft Company  
Aircraft model 182S  
Aircraft registration VH-PCO  
Serial number 18280501  
Type of operation Private  
Sector Piston  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Moorabin Airport, Vic  
Destination Tooradin Airfield, Vic  
Last update 14 November 2018