Aviation safety investigations & reports

Near collision involving Pacific Aerospace CT4, VH-YCO, and Piper PA-28, VH-WJZ, 24 km NW of Gunnedah Airport, NSW on 15 April 2016

Investigation number:
AO-2016-035
Status: Completed
Investigation completed

Final Report

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On 15 April 2016, the instructor and student of a Pacific Aerospace CT/4B aircraft, registered VH-YCO (YCO), conducted a dual training flight under the instrument flight rules. The aircraft departed from Tamworth Airport, and tracked to Narrabri Airport, before commencing the area navigation (RNAV) runway 11 approach to Gunnedah Airport, all in New South Wales.

The instructor reported that they broadcast on the Gunnedah common traffic advisory frequency (CTAF), when 18 NM from the aerodrome. The crew reported hearing a voice-back response from the aerodrome frequency response unit, indicating that no one else had transmitted on the CTAF in the previous 5 minutes, and no response from any other aircraft on the CTAF.

At that time, an instructor and student pilot of a Piper PA-28-181 aircraft, registered VH-WJZ (WJZ), were conducting a local dual training flight from Gunnedah Airport. The instructor reported that they were broadcasting on and monitoring the CTAF.

At about 1450 Eastern Standard Time, YCO was 13 NM north-west of Gunnedah on the RNAV approach for runway 11, and at 4,500 ft above mean sea level (AMSL), when they were alerted by the aircraft’s traffic collision avoidance device of another aircraft. The instructor sighted WJZ at the same level, took control of the aircraft from the student, and conducted a 60° angle of bank turn to the left to avoid WJZ.

The instructor of WJZ sighted YCO when about 13 NM north-west of Gunnedah aerodrome at about 4,000 ft AMSL. The instructor of WJZ conducted a left turn and reported sighting YCO commence a left turn. The aircraft passed at the same level about 150 to 200 m horizontally apart.

Insufficient communication between pilots operating in the same area is the most common cause of safety incidents outside controlled airspace and near non-controlled aerodromes.

 

Aviation Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 51

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[Download  PDF: 218KB]
 
 
Alternate: [Download  DOCX: 197KB]
 

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General details
Date: 15 April 2016   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 16:21 EST    
Location   (show map): Gunnedah Airport, NW 24 km   Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation  
State: New South Wales   Occurrence type: Near collision  
Release date: 08 September 2016   Occurrence class: Operational  
Report status: Final   Occurrence category: Serious Incident  
  Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft 1 details

Aircraft 1 details
Aircraft manufacturer Pacific Aerospace Corporation  
Aircraft model CT/4B  
Aircraft registration VH-YCO  
Serial number 087  
Type of operation Flying Training  
Sector Piston  
Damage to aircraft Nil  
Departure point Tamworth, NSW  
Destination Gunnedah, NSW  

Aircraft 2 details

Aircraft 2 details
Aircraft manufacturer Piper Aircraft Corp  
Aircraft model PA-28-181  
Aircraft registration VH-WJZ  
Serial number 28-8090006  
Type of operation Flying Training  
Sector Piston  
Damage to aircraft Nil  
Departure point Gunnedah, NSW  
Destination Gunnedah, NSW  
Last update 14 November 2018