Pilot Dies Fighting Forest Fire

Friday, October 25, 2013
By George Hatcher

On Oct 24, 2013, a Rebel Ag PZL M-18A Dromader was engaged in firefighting over Ulladulla, NSW when the pilot crashed. The PZL-Mielec M-18 Dromader is a single engine vehicle manufactured by PZL-Mielec in Poland, often used as a firefighting machine.

David Black, 43, from Trangie in central NSW, was water bombing the fire when his plane crashed in rugged bushland. The fire and forested terrain is making response difficult. After giving his life trying to control the fire raging near Ulladulla, New South Wales, David Black is being hailed as a hero.

Whether pilot error, rustic conditions, or mechanical error, the cause of the crash has not been determined.

Fires are still burning in the area.

The accident is being investigated by the ATSB and the investigation #AO-2013-187 has been assigned.

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