The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is investigating an in-flight break-up involving a Van’s Aircraft RV-7A, VH-XWI, about 90 km south of Charters Towers, Queensland, on 23 April 2021.
The pilot, who was the sole occupant, was conducting a private flight from Winton to Bowen, Queensland. During the cruise, the aircraft experienced an in-flight break-up. The pilot was fatally injured, and the aircraft was destroyed.
Two transport safety investigators with experience in aircraft operations and aircraft maintenance travelled to the accident site to examine the wreckage, and map the site using a drone and other site survey equipment. An electronic primary flight display and an iPad were recovered from the accident site and taken to the ATSB’s technical facilities in Canberra for further examination.
The ATSB will also analyse available recorded data and weather information, and will interview witnesses and other involved parties.
A preliminary report is expected to be released in a number of weeks, while a final report will be published at the conclusion of the investigation.
However, should any critical safety issues be identified at any stage during the course of the investigation, the ATSB will immediately notify relevant parties so appropriate safety action can be taken.
|Date:||23 April 2021||Investigation status:||Active|
|Time:||9:52 EST||Investigation level:||Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels|
|Location:||Charters Towers Aerodrome, 172° M 90 km||Investigation phase:||Evidence collection|
|State:||Queensland||Occurrence type:||Collision with terrain|
|Report status:||Pending||Highest injury level:||Fatal|
|Anticipated completion:||4th Quarter 2021|
|Aircraft manufacturer||Amateur Built Aircraft|
|Aircraft model||VANS RV7A|
|Type of operation||Private|
|Damage to aircraft||Destroyed|
|Departure point||Winton, Queensland|