|Lockheed 18-56 Lodestar  ex N9303Z/N63H/RCAF564/43-16435
On it’s delivery flight to N.Z. on January 8th 1965, CMX crashed on take-off from Los Angeles and was severely damaged.
However, it was repaired and finally arrived in N.Z. 13th July 1965 having been ferried out by pilots from the Phelan Aircraft
Company in the U.S.A.
It too went to Hawker-Siddeley in Wellington for it’s topdresser conversion. It was delivered to Airland’s Oringi strip 7th October
CMX crashed 26th March 1968 on the Waewaepa ridge, near Dannevirke, after apparently going in to a spin after a steep turn in
turbulence. Pilot Ted Brown was killed in the ensuing fire and the aircraft was destroyed. Mr. Brown had clocked up 6,450 hours
topdressing including 10 years in Lodestars.
The official CAA report is below:
The aircraft was engaged in an operation involving the aerial sowing of bulk fertiliser. The Lodestar had made a straight sowing
run after which it was seen to cross a ridge. It turned slightly to starboard and followed the line of the ridge before entering a
comparatively steep left-hand turn apparently initiated to bring it back toward a suitable position from which another sowing run
could be started. When about two-thirds of the turn had been completed, the aircraft was seen to flick suddenly into a left-hand
spin which continued very rapidly for one and a half to two and a half turns until the aircraft impacted on bush-clad terrain near the
top of the ridge it had formerly crossed, exploded, disintegrated and burned.
PROBABLE CAUSE: "The accident resulted from irretrievable loss of control occasioned by the unintentional incurrence of a stall
and spin in conditions of turbulence and at a height which did not permit recovery before the aircraft struck the ground."