The aircraft was conducting a flight for a test pilots’ school. The commander, a civilian flight instructor, was in the rear seat and a tutor from the school occupied the front seat.
Shortly after completing a series of aerobatic manoeuvres, the engine lost power without warning. Attempts to restore power were unsuccessful and, at about 1,100 ft agl, the commander committed to a forced landing in a field. Evidence showed that the pilots probably became aware of a farm strip late in the approach to the intended field and made an attempt to land on the strip. The forced landing was unsuccessful and the aircraft struck the ground in a steeply left banked attitude at the southern edge of the strip. The tutor was fatally injured and the commander sustained serious injuries.
The cause of the loss of engine power was not determined, but the reported symptoms were indicative of a fuel system problem.
One Safety Recommendation is made concerning the maintenance of seat belts and harnesses.
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Published 9 November 2017