Occurrence Briefs are concise reports that detail the facts surrounding a transport safety occurrence, as received in the initial notification and any follow-up enquiries. They provide an opportunity to share safety messages in the absence of an investigation.
On 7 March 2018, at about 0810 Central Daylight-savings Time (CDT), an Evektor Sportstar Plus departed Naracoorte on a private flight to Mount Gambier, South Australia (SA). During the cruise at approximately 600 feet above ground level, 21 kilometres south of Naracoorte, the pilot noticed cattle in a paddock on his flight path and banked right to avoid overflying the cattle. During the manoeuver, the pilot’s flight bag fell from the passenger seat and became lodged between the seat and the control column, causing an abrupt pitch down.
The pilot tried to extricate the bag as the aircraft rapidly descended, but the aircraft struck a powerline and collided with terrain. As he exited the aircraft, the pilot stepped on the downed but still live powerline, causing burns to his foot.
The aircraft was extensively damaged and the pilot suffered injuries to the knee, shin and foot.
Source: South Australia Police
Even a planned routine flight in good flying conditions can encounter unexpected hazards at any time. The cockpit should always be arranged to minimise the hazard of loose articles, regardless of the type of flight expected.
Unrestrained items in the cockpit increase the risk of both flight control interference during normal flight and injury to occupants during an accident. Pilots should take care to ensure that all items and cargo are adequately restrained to prevent movement during flight and improve survivability in the event of an accident.
About this report
Decisions regarding whether to conduct an investigation, and the scope of an investigation, are based on many factors, including the level of safety benefit likely to be obtained from an investigation. For this occurrence, no investigation has been conducted and the ATSB did not verify the accuracy of the information. A brief description has been written using information supplied in the notification and any follow-up information in order to produce a short summary report, and allow for greater industry awareness of potential safety issues and possible safety actions.
|Date:||07 March 2018||Investigation status:||Completed|
|Location:||21 km S of Naracoorte|
|Release Date:||12 April 2018||Occurrence category:||Accident|
|Report status:||Final||Highest injury level:||Serious|
|Aircraft manufacturer||Evektor Aerotechnik|
|Aircraft model||Sportstar Plus|
|Type of operation||General Aviation|
|Damage to aircraft||Destroyed|