Aviation safety investigations & reports

Collision with terrain involving Acroduster II SA750, VH-YEL, near Bribie Island, Queensland, 18 August 2021

Investigation number:
Status: Active
Investigation in progress


The ATSB is investigating an in-flight breakup involving an amateur-built Acroduster II SA750 aircraft,  registered VH-YEL, which occurred about 8 NM north east of Caboolture, Queensland, on 18 August 2021.

Earlier that morning, the aircraft, with the pilot as the sole occupant, departed Caboolture Airfield, Queensland, for a local flight over the Bribie Island area. At about 0906, the crew of a helicopter operating in the area on a training flight observed what appeared to be aircraft parts falling from the sky. They then observed the fuselage of an aircraft located in the mudflats near Long Island. A dedicated rescue helicopter winched a rescue crew to the accident site, and it was confirmed that the pilot was deceased. The aircraft was destroyed.

ATSB investigators deployed to the accident site and, with the assistance of other parties, the wreckage was recovered and taken to a secured location for subsequent examination.

The Acroduster II SA750 is an amateur-built two seat biplane, designed for the purpose of conducting aerobatics. VH-YEL was registered in the experimental category.

The evidence collection phase of the investigation will include further detailed examination of the wreckage, a review of available recorded data, a review of aircraft and pilot records, and witness interviews.

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. Should a critical safety issues be identified during the course of the investigation, the ATSB will immediately notify relevant parties so appropriate safety action can be taken.

General details
Date: 18 August 2021   Investigation status: Active  
Time: 0915   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): 8NM North East of Caboolture   Investigation phase: Evidence collection  
State: Queensland   Occurrence type: Collision with terrain  
  Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Pending   Highest injury level: Fatal  
Anticipated completion: 3rd Quarter 2022    

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Amateur Built Aircraft  
Aircraft model ACRODUSTER II SA750  
Aircraft registration VH-YEL  
Serial number 2  
Type of operation General Aviation  
Sector Piston  
Damage to aircraft Destroyed  
Departure point Caboolture, Queensland  
Destination Caboolture, Queensland  
Last update 20 August 2021