Accident ARACE SIRIN ZT-YWO, Monday 26 June 2023
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Date:Monday 26 June 2023
Time:20:02 UTC
Registration: ZT-YWO
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Embalenhle -   South Africa
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Embalenhle
Destination airport:Embalenhle
Investigating agency: CAA S.A.
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
On Monday, 26 June 2023, a pilot launched the Arace Sirin Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) with registration ZT-YWO for inspection on a farm in Embalenhle, Mpumalanga province, with the intention to return to the take-off launch. The flight was conducted under beyond visual line of sight (BLOS) rules by night and under the provisions of Part 101 of the Civil Aviation Regulations (CAR) 2011 as amended.
The pilot reported that a pre-flight inspection was conducted on the UAS. No anomalies were noted apart from the glitch of incorrect altitude readings from time to time that the pilot experienced with the UAS on the day. The pre-flight checks included checking for the UAS's software updates, ensuring that the Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite was acquired, and that the home point was set to the take-off location. The battery voltage indicated 98 percent at the time of launch.
The UAS was launched at 1940Z and it climbed to 262 feet (ft) above ground level (AGL) before the pilot started his mission. The pilot stated that after the UAS was airborne for approximately 22 minutes and whilst it was within the operating range as recommended by the manufacturer, it disconnected from the remote pilot station unit and did not initiate the failsafe mode to return-to-launch position. The pilot climbed on the top of his vehicle in the hope to revive the connection between the UAS and the pilot remote station but to no avail; he then drove closer to the UAS's position but the connection was erratic. The pilot then made his way to the last known location recorded on the remote pilot station unit and found it crashed on the ground with substantial damage.

No damage to property was caused, and no people were injured on the ground.

Probable Cause(s) The pilot kept changing the home point and, thus, the UAS kept flying further in return to launch (RTL) mode until it crashed.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CAA S.A.
Report number: CA18/2/3/10340
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 5 months
Download report: Final report




Revision history:

30-Jan-2024 10:40 ASN Added
30-Jan-2024 10:43 harro Updated [Aircraft type, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Location, Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative, Plane category]

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