Aviation safety investigations & reports

Depart/app/land wrong runway involving a Piper Aircraft Corp PA-28RT-201T, VH-WRI, Mackerode Station, SA on 10 January 1996

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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The pilot had planned to visit a friend's property and made arrangements to land at the nearby Collinsville property airstrip. Before departing he contacted the Collinsville manager to ask permission to use the airstrip, and obtain information concerning its location and condition. On arrival in the area the pilot was able to locate his friend's property from the air, then using directions he had been given he tracked to a property which he believed was Collinsville. He was unable to locate the prominent airstrip of which he had been advised, but found an airstrip behind an orchard with the runway directions, and similar physical features to that of Collinsville. He noted that the area had been recently cleared and mowed, and a fence removed to increase its length.

The pilot overflew the airstrip to check its condition, and reported that he thought its length maybe a little short, but believed he would be able to depart again if he used all the airstrip length from the tree line adjacent to the threshold. The pilot ascertained that a slight south-easterly breeze was blowing, and made an approach for landing towards the south. The aircraft touched down well into the airstrip, and as it was slowing down the left wheel entered a hole which had been left in the ground after the fence removal. This caused the aircraft to veer left and follow a slope towards the airstrip boundary fence. The pilot was unable to regain directional control of the aircraft before the left wing impacted with a concrete fence post causing substantial damage. The manager of this property arrived soon after the accident and advised the pilot that Collinsville was the neighbouring property.

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 15KB]
General details
Date: 10 January 1996   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 10:15 CSuT    
State: South Australia   Occurrence type: Depart/app/land wrong runway  
Release date: 05 November 1996   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final    

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Piper Aircraft Corp  
Aircraft model PA-28RT-201T  
Aircraft registration VH-WRI  
Sector Piston  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Mildura VIC  
Destination Collinsville Stn SA