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On 27 September 2016, at about 0030 Eastern Standard Time, an Avions de Transport Regional ATR42-300 aircraft, registered VH-TOX, was being loaded at Sydney Airport, New South Wales, for a freight charter flight to Brisbane, Queensland.

The freight had arrived from a freight facility where it had been weighed and a load plan completed, with a total freight weight of 2,281 kg.

Prior to loading the freight, a representative from the aircraft operator was unsure of the accuracy of the provided weights and requested ground staff reweigh the freight using calibrated scales at the airport. The measured total weight was 3,215 kg, which was 934 kg more than stated on the load plan.

The flight crew, consisting of a captain and first officer, completed the trim sheet using the actual weights, and the aircraft was within its weight limitations and the allowable centre of gravity envelope. The aircraft operated to Brisbane without incident.

Accurate aircraft weight and balance information is vital for the safety of flight, particularly during take-off. Inaccurate weight of freight items can lead to incorrect flight management selections such as power and trim settings. Discrepancies in these can result in reduced take-off performance and incidents such as tail strikes and runway overruns.


Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 55

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General details
Date: 27 September 2016 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 01:30 EST  
Location   (show map):Sydney Airport Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: New South Wales Occurrence type: Loading related 
Release date: 14 December 2016 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Incident 
Anticipated completion: 4th Quarter 2016 Highest injury level: None 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: ATR-Gie Avions de Transport Régional 
Aircraft model: ATR42-300 
Aircraft registration: VH-TOX 
Serial number: 024 
Type of operation: Charter 
Sector: Turboprop 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Sydney, NSW
Destination:Brisbane, Qld
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Last update 18 April 2017