The pilot took off from the farm strip, which he has flown from for 23 years, to prepare for a skills test to revalidate his licence. He completed several circuits and manoeuvres, including a satisfactory practice of a baulked landing, before making his final approach to Runway 03. There was a north-easterly wind of approximately 6 kt and no unusual turbulence was apparent during the approach but, after touching down and rolling approximately 25 metres, the aircraft suddenly swung right. The pilot reacted by increasing power and taking off again, but he could not prevent the aircraft’s right wing from striking a stationary combine harvester.
After being flipped upside down, the aircraft came to rest with the engine stopped and the pilot was able to turn off the electrics, undo his seat belt and escape through the door onto the upturned right wing. His assessment was that a sudden gust of wind caused the aircraft to swing right. He later discovered that, just before the accident occurred, a person spraying nearby crops experienced squally conditions which caused them to suspend their work.
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Published 9 November 2017