Aviation safety investigations & reports

Flight crew incapacitation involving a SOCATA TBM 700, VH-YZZ, Lake Macquarie ALA, NSW on 15 December 2015

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On the morning of 15 December 2015, a SOCATA TBM 700, aircraft, registered VH-YZZ, departed Gold Coast Airport, Queensland for Lake Macquarie Airport, New South Wales. On board were the pilot and one passenger.

The flight to Lake Macquarie was uneventful. On arrival at Lake Macquarie, the pilot overflew the aerodrome and joined a left circuit to make an approach for runway 07.

When the aircraft was just about to land on the runway the pilot started to feel ‘woozy’ and, shortly afterwards, lost consciousness. The aircraft impacted the runway, bounced and impacted the runway a second time before the pilot regained consciousness. The second impact on the runway collapsed the nose gear and the plane skidded down the runway before veering off on to the grass. The aircraft then came to a stop, resting on the damaged nose section.

The pilot and passenger were not injured during the accident and exited the aircraft. The forward section of the aircraft sustained significant damage as a result of the collapsed nose gear and skidding on the runway.

The health of flight crew is vitally important for the safe operation of aircraft. Ultimately, all flight crew are responsible for monitoring their own health and wellbeing. Any deterioration in health that may affect the performance of aircrew should be taken seriously.

While in this instance the pilot had no indication of a health concern before to the event, it is important for pilots to assess their fitness to fly prior to flight.


Aviation Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 47

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General details
Date: 15 December 2015   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 13:00 EDT   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): Lake Macquarie ALA    
State: New South Wales   Occurrence type: Flight crew incapacitation  
Release date: 13 April 2016   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer S.O.C.A.T.A.-Groupe Aerospatiale  
Aircraft model TBM 700  
Aircraft registration VH-YZZ  
Serial number 226  
Type of operation Private  
Sector Turboprop  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Gold Coast, Qld  
Destination Lake Macquarie, NSW  
Last update 14 November 2018