Investigation number
AO-2023-058
Occurrence date
Location
60.5 NM 162 degrees from Western Creek
State
Northern Territory
Report status
Pending
Investigation level
Short
Investigation type
Occurrence Investigation
Investigation phase
Evidence collection
Investigation status
Active
Aviation occurrence type
Collision with terrain
Occurrence category
Accident
Highest injury level
Fatal
Anticipated completion

The ATSB is investigating a collision with terrain involving a Robinson R22 helicopter, registered VH-DLD, about 120 km south of Katherine, Northern Territory, on 7 December 2023.

The helicopter pilot, who was the sole occupant, was returning home and made a radio call at about 1945 to confirm that their home station lighting was on but did not arrive at their destination.

The helicopter wreckage was located on the evening of 9 December 2023 and the pilot was found deceased.

The ATSB has started the evidence collection phase of the investigation, which included:

•    Liaison with Northern Territory Police to collect search and rescue and accident site data
•    Interviews of family and friends who were witnesses to events on the day of the accident
•    Obtained pilot licencing and qualifications details
•    Requested helicopter maintenance documentation.

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

Aircraft Details
Departure point
Bloodwood Station, NT
Destination
Gorrie Station, NT
Model
R22 Beta
Serial number
3675
Sector
Helicopter
Registration
VH-DLD
Operation type
Part 91 General operating and flight rules
Damage
Destroyed
Manufacturer
Robinson Helicopter Co