Aviation AO-1988-014

Quad City Challenger II ZK-RJX, steep dive into terrain, near Te Tipua, 7 February 1988
Status: Closed
Legacy Inquiry Number: 
88-014
Occurrence Date: 
7 February 1988
Report Publication Date: 
12 October 1990
Jurisdiction: NZ
The aircraft was returning to Gore Aerodrome from a private airstrip. A local farmer observed the aircraft pass over the property about 400 feet above ground level, in normal cruising flight. Shortly afterwards it rolled to the left and entered a steep dive from which it was not recovered. The two occupants received fatal injuries in the ensuing ground impact.

[The probable cause of this accident was the inability of the pilot's medical examiners to detect a chronic disease which caused the sudden collapse or death of the pilot in flight and resulted in the aircraft rolling to the left and entering an uncontrolled steep descent from which it could not be reoverd by the rear seat occupant before it struck the ground.

The significance of the weakened right rear support strut for the horizontal tailplane, in relation to this accident, was not established. The possibility that the in-flight failure of the strut occurred could not be ruled out. Refer also investigation 87-081]
Location: 
near Te Tipua