Aviation safety investigations & reports

Beechcraft 35/B33, VH-CPL, near Armidale NSW, 14 November 1969

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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The pilot prepared the aircraft for take-off from a sloping and undulating field 1380 feet long with an overall down gradient to the east which exceeded 1:50 and with intermediate gradients in excess of 1:35. The strip is used by agricultural pilots as a one way field with take offs to the east. The pilot had previously taken off from this field in both directions without incident. On this occasion he did not consult the aircraft performance charts and elected to take-off to the west without flap at an all up weight of 2,682 Ibs. utilizing only 1100 feet of the field. The surface between two crests on the strip was wet but not boggy. The aircraft became airborne between these crests but did not climb and, after the wheels touched on the crest ahead, the aircraft remained airborne in a nose up attitude without an appreciable increase in airspeed. The stall warning horn sounded and the aircraft hit a wire fence before the wheels touched the ground in an adjoining field. The port wing struck a tree stump and the aircraft was swung through 160 degrees and travelled tail first over felled trees before coming to rest. The aircraft performance charts indicate that, on level ground in short dry grass with a flap setting of 20 degrees, a distance of 1630 feet is required for take at the aircraft weight in the prevailing conditions. Conversely the aircraft weight should not have exceeded 2155 Ibs. for the length of the field used by the pilot.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 108KB]
General details
Date: 14 November 1969   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1145 EST    
Location: near Armidale    
State: New South Wales    
Release date: 25 June 1970   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Beech Aircraft Corp  
Aircraft model 35  
Aircraft registration VH-CPL  
Type of operation Private  
Damage to aircraft Destroyed  
Departure point Ramah  
Departure time 1145  
Destination Wilcannia  
Last update 01 April 2011