Aviation safety investigations & reports

Hard landing involving Kavanagh Balloons E-240 VH-ZON at Moorabbin Airport, Victoria on 27 March 2022

Investigation number:
Status: Active
Investigation in progress


The ATSB has commenced a transport safety investigation into a hard landing involving a Kavanagh E-240 balloon, registered VH-ZON, at Moorabbin Airport, Victoria on 27 March 2022.

On the morning of 27 March 2022, the balloon was being operated on a scenic passenger flight between Reservoir and Moorabbin Airport, Moorabbin, Victoria with a pilot and 10 passengers on board. The pilot reported that there were strong winds on approach, and just before landing, the balloon passed through an inversion. The balloon rotated horizontally so that it did not land normally with the passengers facing rearwards. The balloon landed hard, with the basket coming to rest in a culvert at the end of the runway.

As a result of the hard landing 3 passengers received minor injuries, with 2 of those passengers being transported to hospital as a precaution.

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

General details
Date: 27 March 2022   Investigation status: Active  
Time: 08:05 AUS Eastern Standard Time   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): Moorabbin Airport   Investigation phase: Evidence collection  
State: Victoria   Occurrence type: Collision with terrain  
  Occurrence category: Serious Incident  
Report status: Pending   Highest injury level: Minor  
Anticipated completion: 3rd Quarter 2022    

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Kavanagh Balloons  
Aircraft model E-240  
Aircraft registration VH-ZON  
Serial number E240-496  
Operator Global Ballooning PTY LTD  
Type of operation Ballooning  
Sector Balloon  
Damage to aircraft Minor  
Departure point C.T Barling Park, Reservoir, Victoria  
Destination Moorabbin Airport, Victoria  
Last update 28 March 2022