Aviation safety investigations & reports

Collision with terrain involving Lockheed Martin EC-130Q, N134CG, near Peak View, New South Wales, on 23 January 2020

Investigation number:
Status: Active
Investigation in progress


The ATSB is investigating the collision with terrain of a Lockheed EC-130Q Hercules Large Air Tanker, registration N134CG, near Peak View, New South Wales, on 23 January 2020.

While conducting fire control operations, the aircraft collided with terrain after completing a fire retardant drop. The three flight crew on board were fatally injured, and the aircraft was destroyed.

The ATSB has deployed a team of transport safety investigators with experience in aircraft operations, maintenance and data recovery to the accident site, to begin the evidence collection phase of the investigation, including conducting site mapping and identifying aircraft components for recovery for examination at specialist technical facilities.

As part of the investigation, ATSB investigators will also analyse available recorded data, review weather information, aircraft maintenance and flight crew records, and interview witnesses.

Should any safety critical information be discovered at any time during the investigation, the ATSB will immediately notify operators and regulators so appropriate and timely safety action can be taken.

A final report will be published at the conclusion of the investigation.

General details
Date: 23 January 2020   Investigation status: Active  
  Investigation level: Complex - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location: Near Peak View   Investigation phase: Evidence collection  
State: New South Wales   Occurrence type: Collision with terrain  
  Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Pending   Highest injury level: Fatal  
Anticipated completion: 3rd Quarter 2021    

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Lockheed Aircraft Corp  
Aircraft model EC-130Q  
Aircraft registration N134CG  
Serial number 382-4904  
Operator Coulson Aviation  
Type of operation Aerial Work  
Sector Turboprop  
Damage to aircraft Destroyed  
Departure point Richmond, NSW  
Destination Richmond, NSW  
Last update 29 January 2020