Aviation safety investigations & reports

Pilot incapacitation involving a Cessna 210, VH-JMG, 56 km north of Sydney Airport, NSW, 1 September 2013

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On 1 September 2013 the pilot of a Cessna 210 aircraft, registered VH-JMG (JMG), conducted a private flight from Port Macquarie to Bankstown, New South Wales.

The pilot regularly flew this route and was very familiar with the airspace. On this day, he was feeling unwell, so departed earlier than usual, at about 1510 Eastern Standard Time.

The flight went as planned, with the aircraft arriving at the cruise level of 8, 500 ft around Taree. The pilot requested and was issued a clearance to enter Class C controlled airspace at Williamtown.

The pilot put the aircraft on autopilot, and listened to music through the radio, whilst monitoring the aircraft.

Soon after, there was no further communication with JMG until the pilot called close to Bankstown.

The pilot had fallen asleep and re-entered Class C controlled airspace prior to waking up again. He conducted a spiral descent down to the Lane of Entry near Brooklyn Bridge. The flight then continued as planned with a safe arrival and landing at Bankstown.

This report highlights the need for all pilots to carefully consider their fitness to fly. This includes assessing fatigue and illness. The following publications provide additional information on pilot incapacitation and the ‘IMSAFE’ checklist:


Aviaiton Sort Investigation Bulletin - Issue 25


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General details
Date: 01 September 2013   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1601 EST   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): 56 km north of Sydney Airport    
State: New South Wales   Occurrence type: Flight crew incapacitation  
Release date: 20 January 2014   Occurrence category: Serious Incident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Cessna Aircraft Company  
Aircraft model 210  
Aircraft registration VH-JMG  
Serial number 21061147  
Type of operation Private  
Sector Turboprop  
Damage to aircraft Nil  
Departure point Port Macquarie, NSW  
Destination Bankstown, NSW  
Last update 14 November 2018