Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon near Gympie: 6 killed

Date & Time: Oct 1, 2012 at 1421 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-UXG
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Monto - Caboolture
MSN:
6077
YOM:
1934
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
5
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
6
Captain / Total flying hours:
1134
Captain / Total hours on type:
662.00
Circumstances:
At about 1107 Eastern Standard Time on 01OCT2012, a de Havilland Aircraft Pty Ltd DH-84 Dragon, registered VH-UXG (UXG), took off from Monto on a private flight to Caboolture, Queensland under the visual flight rules (VFR). On board the aircraft were the pilot/owner and five passengers. The weather conditions on departure were reported to include a light south-easterly wind with a high overcast and good visibility. Sometime after about 1230, the aircraft was seen near Tansey, about 150 km north-west of Caboolture on the direct track from Monto to Caboolture. The aircraft was reported flying in a south-easterly direction at the time, at an estimated height of 3,000 ft and in fine but overcast conditions. At 1315, the pilot contacted Brisbane Radar air traffic control (ATC) and advised that the aircraft’s position was about 37 NM (69 km) north of Caboolture and requested navigation assistance. At 1318, the pilot advised ATC that the aircraft was in ‘full cloud’. For most of the remainder of the flight, the pilot and ATC exchanged communications, at times relayed through a commercial flight and a rescue flight in the area due to the limited ATC radio coverage in the area at low altitude. At about 1320, a friend of one of the aircraft’s passengers received a telephone call from the passenger to say that she was in an aircraft and that they were ‘lost in a cloud’ and kept losing altitude. Witnesses in the Borumba Dam, Imbil and Kandanga areas 70 to 80 km north-north-west of Caboolture later reported that they heard and briefly saw the aircraft flying in and out of low cloud between about 1315 and 1415. At 1348, the pilot advised ATC that the aircraft had about an hour’s endurance remaining. The pilot’s last recorded transmission was at 1404. A search for the aircraft was coordinated by Australian Search and Rescue (AusSAR). The aircraft wreckage was located on 3 October 2012, about 87 km north-west of Caboolture on the northern side of a steep, densely wooded ridge about 500 m above mean sea level (Figure 1). The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) later determined that the aircraft probably impacted terrain at about 1421 on 01OCT2012. Preliminary analysis indicated that the aircraft collided with trees and terrain at a moderate to high speed, with a left angle of bank. The aircraft’s direction of travel at impact was toward the south-south-west.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon I in Point Cook: 1 killed

Date & Time: Dec 15, 1979
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-AGC
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Point Cook - Point Cook
MSN:
2045
YOM:
1943
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
1
Circumstances:
Shortly after takeoff from Point Cook Airport on a local flight, while climbing, the twin engine airplane went out of control and crashed. The pilot, sole on board, was killed.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon I in Auckland

Date & Time: Apr 23, 1967
Type of aircraft:
Registration:
ZK-AXI
Flight Phase:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Auckland - Auckland
MSN:
2057
YOM:
1943
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
7
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Circumstances:
Shortly after takeoff from Auckland-Ardmore Airport, while in initial climb, the left engine failed. The pilot elected to make an emergency landing when the airplane stalled and crashed in a grassy area. All eight occupants were injured and the airplane was written off. They were involved in a local skydiving mission.
Probable cause:
The left engine stopped following the failure of a fuel line.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon in Katherine

Date & Time: Dec 11, 1957
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-DMA
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Katherine – Darwin
MSN:
6029
YOM:
1933
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
2
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Circumstances:
Shortly after takeoff, the aircraft turned to the right but failed to climb and after travelling some 8 miles was landed in an open field and overturned. All three occupants were slightly injured while the aircraft was damaged beyond repair.
Probable cause:
Probably the amount and distribution of load reduced the performance capacity such that the aircraft could not reach a safe maneuvering height.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon off Madang

Date & Time: Oct 29, 1955
Type of aircraft:
Registration:
VH-AOE
Flight Phase:
Survivors:
Yes
MSN:
2058
YOM:
1943
Location:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
2
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Circumstances:
The twin engine aircraft was engaged in a local sightseeing flight, carrying two European tourists and one pilot. Shortly after takeoff, while climbing, both engines encountered problems. The aircraft stalled and crashed in the harbor of Madang and came to rest upside down. All three occupants were quickly rescued and uninjured. An attempt to recover the airplane was made on November 8 but it broke in two when it went out of water.
Probable cause:
It was determined that fuel was contaminated by water, causing both engine to malfunction.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon in Heyfield

Date & Time: Aug 9, 1954
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-AOP
Flight Phase:
Survivors:
Yes
MSN:
2010
YOM:
1943
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
7
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Circumstances:
Apparently, the pilot encountered technical problems with the brakes and decided to abandon the takeoff procedure. Unable to stop within the remaining distance, the twin engine aircraft overran and crashed in flames in a deep ravine. All eight occupants were injured and the aircraft was destroyed by fire.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon in Cheviot Hills: 2 killed

Date & Time: Oct 20, 1953
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-URY
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Cheviot Hills – Charters Towers
MSN:
6082
YOM:
1934
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
4
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
2
Circumstances:
Shortly after takeoff from Cheviot Hill Aerodrome, while climbing to a height of 50 feet, the aircraft nosed down and crashed. The pilot Captain Martin Garrett and a passegner, Mrs. Kathleen O'Leary were killed. The Doctor Mr. O'Leary was injured while two other passengers, Mrs. King Lethbridge and her child were uninjured. The aircraft was involved in an ambulance flight to Charter Towers on behalf of the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
Probable cause:
It was determined that the engine failed during initial climb.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon in Yarramunda: 3 killed

Date & Time: Dec 13, 1951
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-URV
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Site:
Schedule:
Mount Hagen – Ogelbeng – Tremearne – Baiyer River – Wabag – Wapenamanda – Yarramunda – Madang
MSN:
6089
YOM:
1934
Location:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
2
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
3
Captain / Total flying hours:
6000
Circumstances:
The aircraft was engaged in a flight from Mount Hagen to Madang with stops scheduled in Ogelbeng, Tremearne, Baiyer River, Wabag, Wapenamanda and Yarramunda, carrying two inspectors from the DCA and one pilot who were performing inspections of various local airfields. While flying in a narrow valley, the pilot elected to gain height when the aircraft hit trees and crashed in flames. The airplane was destroyed by a post crash fire and all three occupants were killed.
Crew:
F/O Sydney W. Peebles.
Probable cause:
It was determined that the accident was caused by the inexperience of the pilot who has 6,000 flying hours but little Highlands experience and was restricted by Qantas to the Madang - Goroka route. He took the DCA charter against company regulations and flew the wrong way up a narrowing valley, attempting to out climb rising terrain while throwing passenger's baggage out to reduce the load.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon in Karanka: 1 killed

Date & Time: Sep 21, 1951 at 0730 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-AXL
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Lae – Wabag
MSN:
2071
YOM:
1943
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
1
Circumstances:
The pilot, Captain Frederick G. Barlogie, was performing a cargo flight from Lae to Wabag. En route, he encountered poor conditions with reduced visibility due to smoke haze. The twin engine aircraft was flying at an insufficient height when it hit obstacles and crashed in a wooded area located 5 km from Katanka Airstrip. The aircraft was destroyed and the sole occupant was killed.
Probable cause:
Investigation found that the pilot continued the flight under conditions of reduced visibility in severe smoke haze so that flight in sight of ground could only be maintained at a dangerously low altitude.

Crash of a De Havilland DH.84 Dragon in Kerowagi

Date & Time: Apr 2, 1951
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
VH-BDB
Flight Phase:
Survivors:
Yes
Schedule:
Kerowagi – Wau
MSN:
2063
YOM:
1943
Region:
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
8
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Circumstances:
The aircraft failed to gain height after takeoff and crashed. Three occupants, among them the pilot, were seriously injured. The aircraft was written off. Investigators found that the aircraft was overloaded by at least 18 kilograms and had 8 passengers and 2 crew, when only certificated to carry 6 passengers. Only 4 seat belts were fitted and no passengers were wearing seat belts. Unsecured freight was carried behind the passengers, moving forward on impact and hitting the passengers. The pilot had not completed a load sheet or calculated the centre of gravity. The tailwind on takeoff exceeded the maximum allowable for Kerowagi Airfield.
Probable cause:
The aircraft failed to become airborne when taking off from an airstrip at high density altitude due to incorrect technique on the part of the pilot in that he failed to adjust the mixture controls to obtain maximum engine power.