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Pilot broke 'a number of rules' in fatal Raglan plane crash, Civil Aviation Authority finds

A pilot who killed himself and a passenger in a fatal plane crash in Raglan broke "a number of rules", according to an investigation by the Civil Aviation Authority.

Aircraft ZK-JRX after a fatal crash in Raglan on December 17, 2018. Source: Supplied

Marlborough man Peter Cree, 64, was previously identified as flying the Van’s RV-4 light plane with passenger Louey Sandlant, 33, from Tasman, when it crashed on December 17, 2018.

An investigation into the crash was released by the Civil Aviation Authority today, saying the crash could have been avoided.

"These rules are in place to keep pilots and the public safe and in this case a number of rules were broken and two people died," aviation safety deputy chief executive Dean Winter says.

The two men had been flying in the home-built plane, ZK-JRX, from Motueka to Auckland, stopping at aerodromes in Whanganui and Raglan.

While approaching the Raglan aerodrome, the plane entered a spin and crashed into the ground, the report found.

Mr Cree didn't have a licence to fly the light plane - only certificates to fly microlight aircraft and gliders. He also didn't have a valid medical certificate to fly the plane.

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When the plane stalled and began spinning, the Civil Aviation Authority says he may have been taken by surprise.

"Due to the low altitude of the aircraft when it stalled and entered the spin, and not having been adequately trained on the aircraft, the pilot had no chance to recover the situation prior to the aircraft striking the mud flats," the report says.

No defects were found in the plane that could've led to the crash, but it was overloaded at the time of the flight.

The Civil Aviation Authority hasn't recommended any changes to the rules as a result of the crash, saying: "The New Zealand aviation system relies on people who actively participate in the system to understand and comply with Civil Aviation rules.

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The light plane went down near Raglan harbour’s shoreline, killing two. Source: Breakfast

"The pilot involved in this accident did not comply with a number of those rules and this resulted in his death, and the death of his passenger," the report says.

The pilot was not officially named in the report. However, the two people on board the plane were previously identified as Mr Cree and Mr Sandlant. In the report, the pilot was identified as the 64-year-old.