Statement regarding the crash of Convair 340 (ZS-BRV)
On Tuesday, 10 July 2018, the Convair took off from Wonderboom Airport in Pretoria for a scenic flight before its planned departure for Holland the following day. In April this year Rovos Rail donated the aircraft to Aviodrome, an aviation museum and theme park situated in Leylstad which is approximately 50km from Amsterdam.
The flight was being piloted by Captain Ross Kelly and Doug Hayward, two experienced pilots from Australia who had successfully flown sister Convair ZS-ARV to Australia in August 2016. Rovos Rail had donated the aircraft to the Historical Aviation Restoration Society based at Albion Park south of Sydney.
On Tuesday afternoon the plane experienced engine failure on takeoff and crashed just outside Wonderboom Airport. Sadly engineer Chris Barnard died in the accident. He was an experienced engineer and pilot and had been intimately involved with the Convairs for 17 years.
Captains Ross Kelly and Doug Hayward were injured and transported by helicopter to Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg where they are in induced comas, but stable. The prognosis is optimistic.
Rovos Rail is supporting Aviodrome and the SA CAA with the subsequent investigation.