AN INVESTIGATION into a fatal Maryborough plane crash has deemed it was the likely result of power loss and might have been avoided with a controlled landing.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau, which released its findings yesterday, state the De Havilland Tiger Moth was observed to have intermittent power loss after take-off at Maryborough Airport on January 27.
Findings reveal the engine trouble was probably caused by a partial blockage of the aircraft’s fuel cock.
The ASTB found the pilot continued the flight, either maintaining altitude or climbing slightly, and made a left turn at the upwind end of the runway before stalling and plummeting to the ground.
Two men, the pilot and a passenger, died on impact.
The ATSB investigation says there was sufficient runway space for the aircraft to make a safe landing straight ahead but the flight continued under limited power and without enough height to clear trees beyond the runway.
The incident happened shortly after 5pm.
Seven trucks from Maryborough, Carisbrook and surrounding areas took about 10 minutes to douse the grass and scrub fire that resulted at the scene.
The ATSB said the accident was a reminder for pilots that continued power in such circumstances was unpredictable and risk could be reduced by a controlled landing at the earliest opportunity.