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Narrative:Ex-RNZAF NZ1494 (c/no.DHNZ174) Built at by DeHavilland New Zealand at Rongotai. BOC at Unit 39 Rongotai 5 February 1945. Declared surplus by Government Stores Board on 22 May 1955 and sold by tender number 5968. Sold to WW Contracting Co Ltd, Dunedin for 455 pounds. Struck Off Charge 30 June 1955.
De Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth
|Operator:||Croydon Air Services|
|C/n / msn:|| DHNZ174|
|Fatalities:||Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2|
|Airplane damage:|| Written off (damaged beyond repair)|
|Location:||Hinden, Taieri Gorge -
|Phase:|| En route|
|Departure airport:||Gore, New Zealand|
|Destination airport:||Taieri, New Zeland|
Entered the New Zealand Civil Aircraft Register as ZK-BGP. To J. Sinclair, Balclutha in 1958. To E. Cuttance, Mosgiel. To R. Tapper, Invercargill in 1962. To Y. Neill, Dunedin in 1964. To D. Grave, M. McLeay and P. Kane, Invercargill by 1978 for restoration. To Mouat/McLeay Syndicate, Otautau on
19 February 1986. To J. McLeay, Invercargill on 17 August 1989. To J. McLeay Trust, Invercargill on 14 February 1990. To Croydon Air Services, Gore on 25 October 1996.
En route to Taieri, ZK-BGP flew alongside an excursion train travelling above a river gorge. The aircraft was flown directly into a moderately strong wind, which resulted in a slow groundspeed.
The margin above the power-off stall speed in this situationmay have been minimal. After flying
alongside the train for a few minutes, a right turn was commenced towards the railway track. The turn would have further reduced the margin above the stall speed. During the turn, the right wing
and nose dropped sharply and the aircraft entered a spin. There was insufficient height to recover,
and the aircraft impacted a rocky area on the gorge slope, immediately catching fire. The two
occupants were killed.
Fixation on the train and the illusion of a safe airspeed created by the increasing groundspeed when turning down-wind probably combined to cause the person flying to misjudge the actual airspeed.
It was recommended that the circumstances and findings of this accident be published to serve as a further reminder of the hazards and illusions present in low and slow flight.
||Dr. John Smith
||Updated [Cn, Operator, Phase, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]|
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