A recreation aircraft and glider collided mid-air near the Sunshine Coast yesterday, killing two pilots.
The incident took place just before 3pm on Wednesday, with the wreckage of the two aircraft being found 200 metres apart in a paddock at Kybong, near Gympie.
Two small aircraft crash at Kybong, near Gympie, both pilots killed https://t.co/wTpfS9usW9
— Stephen (@Stephen82548792) November 9, 2022
The two victims, both sole occupants, were identified as being an 80-year-old Caboolture man and a 77-year-old Glenwood man.
One witness told 7News he was sitting on his veranda when he heard a “big bang”.
“We thought that didn’t sound like a gunshot, and we looked up and saw white bits of plane falling out of the sky.”
Before the crash, the glider and its tug aircraft took off from Gympie Aerodrome at Kybong, the home of Sunshine Coast Gliding.
It has been confirmed the second aircraft involved in the incident was not the tow plane.
Inspector Brad Inskip said, “The glider left from the gliding club. At this stage, we’re not sure where the ultralight came from, whether it came from here … it’s too early to know.
“The investigation will involve mapping those scenes, examining the aircraft and going from there, and obviously witness statements and interviews.
“This is a tragic incident and quite a graphic scene left there for all the emergency services and for the witnesses … terrible for the family and for those involved.
“This is a little local airport where many people in the community are here together — the gliding club is obviously very close.
“It’s a small little regional gliding club. They all know each other. This is going to hit the community very hard.”
Queensland’s Forensic Crash Unit is investigating the circumstances of the incident, and a report will be prepared for the coroner.
Mid-air crashes are rare, with the last in Australia taking place in February 2020.