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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 715
Last updated: 26 April 2019
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Type:Silhouette image of generic PA34 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Piper PA-34-200 Seneca
Owner/operator:Proflite Australia
Registration: VH-CTT
C/n / msn: 34-7250261
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Bankstown, Sydney, NSW -   Australia
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:Bankstown, Sdyney, NSW (BWU/YSBK)
Destination airport:Bankstown, Sydney, NSW (BWU/YSBK)
Investigating agency: ATSB
On 11 November 2003, at about 12:40 Eastern Summer Time, a qualified pilot, with a flight instructor, was undertaking multi-engine aircraft training in a Piper Aircraft Corp PA-34-200 Seneca, registered VH-CTT. The training was to include flight with one engine intentionally set to produce little or no thrust. The pilot occupied the left front seat of the aircraft, and the instructor the right front seat.

The aircraft departed runway 11 centre and turned right to operate in the southern training circuit using runway 11 right (11R). They had completed three circuits and were turning onto the final approach to runway 11R, for a fourth touch and go, when the aerodrome controller (ADC) saw that the aircraft's landing gear was not extended.

The ADC queried the pilots regarding the landing gear and then saw the landing gear extend as the aircraft continued the approach. Neither pilot acknowledged the ADC's radio transmission. The ADC then issued a clearance for a touch and go to runway 11R. The instructor acknowledged the transmission by reading back that clearance.

Witnesses reported that when the aircraft was almost over the threshold to runway 11R it commenced to diverge right while maintaining a low height. They reported that when the aircraft was abeam the mid length of the runway, it's nose lifted and the aircraft banked steeply to the right before impacting the ground in a near vertical nose-down attitude.

A fire ignited after the impact. The main cabin door, located on the right side, separated from the aircraft during the accident. The instructor vacated the aircraft through that opening about 30 seconds after the aircraft came to rest.

The pilot was fatally injured. The aircraft was destroyed by impact forces and post-impact fire. No other damage was reported. The instructor received severe burns and was treated in hospital for three and a half weeks before succumbing to those injuries.

ATSB Conclusions:
1. The aircraft was not landed, or power restored to the right engine in sufficient time to regain stable flight.
2. The aircraft departed from controlled flight at a height from which recovery was not possible



Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: ATSB
Status: Investigation completed
Download report: Final report

Piper PA-34-200 Seneca VH-CTT at Bankstown, Sydney (BWU/YSBK) 8 June 2003


Photo of VH-CTT courtesy

Moorabbin (YMMB / MBW)
6 March 1977; (c) David Tanner (via Daniel Tanner)

Revision history:

21-Jan-2008 10:00 ASN archive Added
15-Apr-2014 17:32 Dr. John Smith Updated [Aircraft type, Cn, Operator, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Location, Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Damage, Narrative]

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