Cause of Kris Barr's plane crash a priority for investigators

INVESTIGATORS are working to determine what caused Kris Barr’s plane to crash on Sunday night.

Those from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau arrived at the scene yesterday morning.

Investigator Simon Grummett said the aircraft had definitely hit a powerline and crashed upside down into a field, but what happened during the moments before the crash was unclear.

Senior transport safety investigator Simon Grummett said the plane had hit a powerline. Picture: MATTHEW SMITHWICK

Senior transport safety investigator Simon Grummett said the plane had hit a powerline. Picture: MATTHEW SMITHWICK

“In terms of what the aircraft had been doing, where the pilot had been flying (prior), we’re a little bit unsure,” he said.

“The fact gathering has just begun.

“The lead-up to the accident is something that we’re going to be looking into.

“As to the flight path and things like that, that’s hopefully information we will find out from any witnesses who are available.”

The safety authority investigators are likely to remain at the site until later today or tomorrow, and parts of the plane may be sent to Canberra for analysis.

The investigation will focus on a range of factors including possible pilot error, weather conditions, the condition of the aircraft and the capabilities and medical history of Mr Barr.

South Australian Bill Bussey witnessed the crash with wife Lyndall after arriving in the town just an hour earlier.

“It sounded like a stunt plane ... the motor sounded rough,” he said.

“It backfired a couple of seconds before he pranged.”

Mrs Bussey said she witnessed Mr Barr travelling at little more than tree height before he crashed.

She said she believed he had purposely avoided landing in a populated area like the nearby Farmers Inn Hotel or houses.

“I think he did a good job,” Mrs Bussey said.

The safety bureau will release a preliminary report in about a month, while Albury police are also preparing a report for the coroner.

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