Aviation occurrence briefs

Cabin depressurisation involving Hawker Beechcraft Corporation B200, 73 km SE of Wangaratta Airport, Vic., on 17 January 2018

Status: Completed
Investigation completed


Occurrence Briefs are concise reports that detail the facts surrounding a transport safety occurrence, as received in the initial notification and any follow-up enquiries. They provide an opportunity to share safety messages in the absence of an investigation.

What happened

On 17 January 2018, at about 1320 Eastern Daylight-saving Time (EDT), a Hawker Beechcraft Corporation B200C was en-route to Essendon, Victoria (Vic.), with a pilot, flight paramedic and passenger on board. On passing through flight level (FL) 130,[1] the flight paramedic advised that an oxygen mask had fallen from the stowed position. The cabin altitude indicator showed a positive rate of climb, with the indicator displaying 9,500 ft. Reducing cabin pressure confirmed the loss of pressurisation.

The pilot conducted the non-normal checklist and obtained a clearance from air traffic control to descend to 10,000 ft. As the aircraft levelled at 10,000 ft, the pilot observed that the cabin altitude was stable at 9,500 ft. The pilot followed the appropriate failure management procedures, however, none of these actions restored the pressurisation system to operational. The flight continued at 10,000 ft and landed without further incident at Essendon Airport.

Following the incident, the fault was confirmed during a ground run and the safety valve solenoid switch was replaced.

Safety message

This incident highlights the importance of flight crews maintaining awareness of all system states and being prepared to act. Quality training in failure management procedures assists in equipping crew members with the required knowledge to effectively respond to a time critical emergency.

About this report

Decisions regarding whether to conduct an investigation, and the scope of an investigation, are based on many factors, including the level of safety benefit likely to be obtained from an investigation. For this occurrence, no investigation has been conducted and the ATSB did not verify the accuracy of the information. A brief description has been written using information supplied in the notification and any follow-up information in order to produce a short summary report, and allow for greater industry awareness of potential safety issues and possible safety actions.



  1. Flight level: at altitudes above 10,000 ft in Australia, an aircraft’s height above mean sea level is referred to as a flight level (FL). FL 130 equates to 13,000 ft.
General details
Date: 17 January 2018   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1320 EDT    
Location   (show map): Near Wangaratta Airport    
State: Victoria    
Release Date: 28 March 2018   Occurrence category: Incident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Hawker Beechcraft Corporation  
Aircraft model B200C  
Type of operation Aerial Work  
Sector Turboprop  
Damage to aircraft Nil  
Last update 04 June 2018