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Truss: Aviation Safety Regulation Review

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Truss: Aviation Safety Regulation Review

Old 29th May 2014, 01:56
  #701 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Let me tell you where failure of the Truss aviation review leads...

It leads directly to the destruction of jobs and businesses and a lack of new investment in anything to do with the aviation industry, period.

The key ingredients in Western Economies that differentiate them from Third World Economies are trust and cooperation as Francis Fukuyama observed over Ten years ago in a book on that subject. The reason for this is that transaction costs (the costs of doing a business transaction) are minimal in a high trust environment, but stratospheric in a low trust environment because one has to try and manage the risks associated with unconscionable or illegal behaviour by the other party. In many parts of the world, there are obvious business opportunities going begging because no investor or entrepreneur can trust Government or counterparties not to either steal the investment itself or confiscate the profits made.

To put that another way, there are fields ripe for planting in the Third world because the landowner is frightened that his investment of seed, fertiliser and labour will be for nothing. Confiscatory official taxation, land appropriation, "fees" and other forms of blackmail eat into his revenue.

To put that yet another way, I know of a Russian polypropylene manufacturer who refused to sell product to the West because he knew that the instant he had a stream of foreign currency - U.S. dollars, in his revenue, the Russian mafia would move in and become his "partner".

So what has that got to do with CASA? Simple. CASA operates a capricious, untrustworthy regulatory environment for Australian Aviation. The regulations are deliberately opaque, contradictory, arbitrary and deliberately capable of multiple interpretations depending on the whim of the interpreter. Enforcement is by Kangaroo court without a shadow of due process nor fairness and the administration of this entire system seems designed and constructed to benefit the regulators, not the general public let alone the industry.

CASA and now the ATSB and perhaps Airservices have totally lost the trust of the aviation industry.

Does anyone seriously doubt what I say?

The first and vital conclusion the review must draw is that CASA has lost the trust of the industry - all else follows from that, starting with the obvious immediate requirement to restore trust.

To put that another way, if that conclusion is not drawn, then nothing the review can recommend, nor the Government mandate, will make the slightest bit of difference to the current situation and further decay is inevitable.
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Old 29th May 2014, 02:23
  #702 (permalink)  
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So what has that got to do with CASA? Simple. CASA operates a capricious, untrustworthy regulatory environment for Australian Aviation. The regulations are deliberately opaque, contradictory, arbitrary and deliberately capable of multiple interpretations depending on the whim of the interpreter. Enforcement is by Kangaroo court without a shadow of due process nor fairness and the administration of this entire system seems designed and constructed to benefit the regulators, not the general public let alone the industry.
Sunfish, your tongue is better than a $20 whore! Well worded and absolutely spot on
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Old 29th May 2014, 02:40
  #703 (permalink)  
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Hamble, negative sir. I've got the correct person. Works in the office of the DAS, answers to Dr Voodoo, based in Can'tberra, sits below P.Boyd on that little attached list etc
You might be correct with who you are talking about but to clarify the lady at the bottom of the list has an aviation background. Wasn't a journalist but a teacher before starting a career in GA then eventually moved to the ATSB.

Back to topic though. Does anyone still think that the situation that Sunfish describes is going to be altered 1 jot by the current review? Posted in November

I'm not sure why a review is required or why more submissions are required as the Senate has a compactus full. If significant and structural change emerges from this review not only will I be pleasantly surprised but I will go to parliament and extend to the Rt Hon Mr Truss a laurel and hardy handshake as he will be the first M.P. to actually make a step forward rather than endlessly talking about reforming aviation in this country.
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Old 29th May 2014, 03:12
  #704 (permalink)  
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Fair go, LL: The Minister’s taken the extraordinarily bold step of (re)expanding the CASA Board.

Job done!
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Old 29th May 2014, 06:46
  #705 (permalink)  
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Note to self Creamy, to find the cloud in every silver lining.
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Old 29th May 2014, 08:03
  #706 (permalink)  
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“Privatisation of Secondary Airports being a mistake”.

We are extremely lucky to have someone of the calibre of Senator David Fawcett in there asking the real questions. The way that Messers Mrdak and Doherty sidestep the issues when asked the pointed questions just hardens the resolve of those who are actively working away to see that this shambles is reversed.
Take the time to look at the Archerfield Chamber of Commerce Inc website to see progress so far. After more than five years of exhaustive research and correspondence with Government Departments we now find ourselves nearly two years in the AAT dealing with political stone-walling and double-speak along with many legal diversions!


Recent media release about the appalling status of our secondary airports.

Dear Member,

In April Archerfield Airport Chamber of Commerce Inc. wrote to Hon Warren Truss Minister for Infrastructure and Transport about

“Privatisation of Secondary Airports being a mistake”.

The Chamber stated that “It was incumbent on all of us to address the shortcomings (of Secondary Airport Privatisation) by means other than repossession of the airfields. The task though falls primarily on the government of the day as they alone have the resources to take the required action.”

The Chamber further stated to Minister Truss that “In the policy the coalition took to the polls, undertakings were given that many of the existing defects in policies relating to aviation would be addressed. So far there have been no changes implemented and more tellingly no public discussions of the prospect of any changes.”

The Chamber warned “We are aware of important enquiries that you have implemented and we fully acknowledge the importance in probing deeply into some industry matters so that root and branch corrective action can be taken in order for effective and permanent redress to be achieved. That inevitably involves some delay in instituting change. While accepting that point, the really important fact that we live in a commercial world cannot be ignored.”

Minister Truss was told that many current policies are causing great financial cost directly to the General Aviation industry which is as a consequence in undeniable accelerated decline.

This is particularly true of the Secondary Airports which are in catastrophic decline post privatisation.

Total General Aviation Flying Hours
[i] (which excludes sport aircraft and Airline Transport) are almost static as to actual hours but in decline compared to population.

Archerfield Airport’s movements
[ii] are now only 47% of pre-privatisation levels.

The loss has been a 53 % decline post airport privatisation, that is 134,336 movements per annum down from pre-privatisation levels.

Minister Truss was advised that “A large number of these factors are self-evident and do not need an expensive and protracted enquiry to establish their existence. Immediate action however is required.”

A classic example of that is, in relation to airports, the failure of successive governments to implement the statutory provisions of the Airports Act 1996 and the Airport Sales Agreements –including the Commonwealth leases and the Sale Transfer Instruments.

To list only a few examples;

  1. the failure to maintain the airports at least to the standard at the commencement of the lease;
  2. the failure to make provision for development for future aviation and aviation related needs;
  3. the failure by lease holders to adhere to their privatisation obligations to renew the leases of hangar owners who have title to their hangars and equitable interests as to renewal;
  4. the permanent quarantining of land through long term leases for non-aviation industrial purposes thereby denying future expansion for aviation purposes- clearly aimed at bringing about the premature demise of this public utility,
  5. the way airport leasing companies stifle both competition and development in the aviation service industry by denying, without explanation or reason, both the expansion of established industry or the introduction of competition on their airfields;
  6. the lack of any mechanism to restrain the abuse of the monopoly powers in the hands of the airport leasing companies including:
    1. Denying lessees renewals to gain their assets by reversion,
    2. Placing unreasonable restrictions on lessees upon lease renewal, for instance renewing leases that previously permitted aircraft maintenance and hangarage to aircraft hangarage only with no justification for the additional restrictions
    3. very high rental increases which cannot be afforded by the industry that are leading to the destruction and closure of general aviation business being irreplaceable losses to the industry.

The Chamber reminded Minister Truss that “The Parliament enacted a Bill which, with the benefit of hind sight, had many short comings. That said, it has never been properly implemented. The interpretation of the Airports Act 1996 has been left entirely in the hands of the bureaucrats, an unelected and unaccountable body answerable to no one, whose members are technically ignorant both of the needs of the aviation industry and of commercial reality.”

The Chamber complained that “When any member of the aviation world has written to the various Ministers of Transport the reply always comes back from a public servant who invariably states that any dispute with a lease holder is a commercial matter and should be decided in the court room, irrespective of how blatantly the Act has been breached. Departmental policy has always been to support and promote the interests of the airport lease holders. In short the interpretation and implementation of the Act has been left entirely to the bureaucracy who developed the policy of ‘LIGHT HANDS” as justification for their actions, a policy which lacks a statutory base.”

The Chamber reminded Minister Truss that “It is not within the power of any government to turn a blind eye and fail to implement what is on the statute books. Some of the significant economic problems the industry faces in General Aviation can be ameliorated by resolute implementation of the Act.”

The Chamber Stated “the secondary airports in Australia form the nodal points, the very heart of general aviation in this country being the advanced centres of aviation technology and knowhow and the gateway to the regions. They must be allowed to function efficiently as public utilities not private fiefdoms of property developers.

The aviation industry is impatient for these impediments to be addressed and fails to see why some of the readily apparent and easily tackled failings have not been dealt with.

The Minister therefore should as a matter of great urgency abandon the Light hands policy and endorse the establishment of an Airports Review Tribunal.

Given the Federal Attorney General’s 13th May 2014 media announcement to merge all the Federal Review Tribunals, now is the time to implement it.

Archerfield Airport Chamber of Commerce Inc.

Lindsay Snell

Contact: (07) 3274 1477

Download Media Release as PDF ( 161kb)

Download Airport Review Tribunal Proposal ( 137kb)

[i] Source: BTRE General Aviation Activity Reports (excludes sport aircraft and Airline Transport)
[ii] Source: Airservices Australia and Airport Master Plan Movement Reports - During Tower hours)

Archerfield Airport Chamber of Commerce Inc
GPO Box 2511
Brisbane Qld 4001


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Old 29th May 2014, 10:01
  #707 (permalink)  
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Top post AACCI...

and well timed...
Presumably you guys put in a Submission to the ASRR?? So any chance of getting a viewing or at least a quote??

Here is part of the Hansard segment for the Airports questioning in Estimates (link here):
Senator FAWCETT: Essendon is a case in point, where it is proposed possibly to shorten a runway. I was asking CASA about their professional input, which says that the length of the runway, particularly for lower weight aircraft under 5,700 kilos, is not just a function of the flight manual but there are a number of factors that have to be applied which significantly lengthen the requirement that an operator has to meet to allow for engine failures and other things. CASA have confirmed that it is the case that they have to be applied. Can I ask: if the advice that a consultant gave as part of a master planning process did not include that factoring information and it was subsequently shown that CASA had verified that the figures they had interpolated from the flight manual were correct but they had not actually notified the department that the operator had to take these other things into account so that the runway that was proposed by the master plan ended up being too short for the aircraft that would be using it, what would happen to the master planning process? Would it be overturned? Would you go back and change it? What would the department do in that case?

Mr Doherty : Perhaps I could start the answer and Ms Horrocks may wish to add to it. With the general thrust of your question being about whether, in considering a master plan, we would look to the impact of a change in runway, not only in terms of the technical compliance with a manual but in terms of the overall impact about how that change would affect the operations, clearly our interest would be in being able to assess the impact on operations practically. In terms of the detail of how that assessment is conducted, I think it is correct that we would be looking to CASA for an assessment on some of those technical aspects. As for the advice that they provide in relation to each master plan, we would be looking for that sort of advice. When it comes to input from a technical expert or consultant engaged by the airport, we would be keen to understand whether that is reliable and would get an expert opinion ourselves on that. Initially that would come from CASA. If that information is available then to the minister, the minister would make his call in terms of whether that master plan is something that should be approved or not.

Senator FAWCETT: I guess the question I have for you is that I have had a large number of complaints from operators at Archerfield Airport who contend that the expert who was called to support the master planning process looked at the AF10, the flight manual, and derived from that, for each of the aircraft type that flies at Archerfield, a strip length for the new north-south runway which was less than a thousand metres—I think it was about 900 metres—but it did not take into account the factoring that the CAOs require an operator to put into their operations manual. They contend that CASA, in double-checking the figures on behalf of the department, said yes, they accurately interpreted the AFM but did not highlight the fact that factoring had not been included; therefore, the master plan, which has been approved, endorses a runway which is too short to meet the legal requirements that CASA actually require the operators to meet. So my question is: if that contention is validated, what will happen to the master plan?

Mr Doherty : I think CASA took on notice last night the issue about what exactly their assessment was and what it covered in the Archerfield circumstance and I would certainly be happy to take on notice from our side too to look at that assessment. In terms of the impact of that decision, I am not entirely sure at this stage just where the process of the runway changes at Archerfield are and whether there would be some formal further approval required before they were actually given effect to.

Mr Mrdak : If I may add, I think our view would be, in the circumstances that you have outlined, where it was shown that there was any error or there was further information which may have changed that consideration, that would not necessarily invalidate the master plan. What it would mean, though, at the time the airport was to bring forward a major development proposal for the runway work—and I will ask Ms Horrocks to comment about the status of that—is that is the point at which that adjustment would need to be made and a separate approval process would apply. However, coming to your question, I do not think our view would be that the master plan would be invalid, because it is a concept planning document which is set out predominantly for zoning and planning purposes. The details of any runway shortening at either Archerfield or Essendon would have to be dealt with through an MDP and a specific approval program. If you do not mind, I will get Ms Horrocks to give us an update on where we think Archerfield is at on that runway proposal.
Ms Horrocks : Archerfield has not developed the MDP at this point in time. We would normally seek to look at any preliminary or exposure draft of an MDP and identify any required information at that point in time and then it would go through the legislative process for an MDP.

Senator FAWCETT: Can I just go to a broader issue now around the Commonwealth's responsibilities in terms of both airports it has gifted or sold or leased—and there are a number under that. There is a common theme here—and you would be very well aware of this, Mr Mrdak; I have raised at almost every estimates for a few years now—and it is the issues of aircraft operators, whether they be maintenance shops or flying schools or charter operators, which feel as though the monopoly power of an airport owner or leaseholder has led to unconscionable decisions in terms of conditions of lease renewal or barring them doing certain things on the airport, which, to a layman's reading, appears to be in direct contravention of the terms of the lease in terms of maintaining the airport for aviation and not barring reasonable access for airlines or aircraft operators for aviation-related activities. The feedback I have had from the department again and again is that it is a commercial issue and that those people should take up their commercial remedies. I have had feedback from a number that they have tried that with no success, from the point of view that people say, 'This is an issue between the Commonwealth as either the holder, the owner of the land and at the head of the lease or, in the case of Sale or Broome International Airport that was actually sold, the covenant that was signed between the purchaser and the Commonwealth points back to the Commonwealth having responsibility.' So could I just ask: has the department sought legal advice as to its responsibilities or any powers it may have to enforce the terms of a lease or the covenant that was signed by somebody that it sold an airport to?

Mr Doherty : You are right; there are two different categories. In relation to the ALOP deeds, which are the deeds that applied in relation to the transfer of many of the regional airports, not the leased federal airports, we have taken legal advice on issues from time to time which clearly shows some gaps in the capacity. The practice over a period with those leases has been that we are able to, and do as a matter of policy, ensure that the airports continue to operate as airports but that our powers to control what happens on the airport in any more detail would be very limited. In relation to the federal leased airports, we obviously have a range of more direct regulatory controls which go through the master planning and development plan processes and, in that circumstance, we are trying to achieve the right balance between the airport operators' rights in relation to the site, which they acquired through a tender process, and the development of the site and the interests of the users.

Senator FAWCETT: The question that arises, though, from somebody who has invested significant money in an asset—for example, a hangar—on an airport is that, if the Commonwealth has signed a lease or a sale document with a covenant that says, 'This will be maintained predominantly for an aviation purpose,' and then they are told that they cannot actually park private aircraft on the airfield because it is running out of space and yet the airport owner is selling off airport land for housing, how is that maintaining the prime purpose of that airport for aviation? And if, indeed, we have signed a covenant, what is the point of a contract or a covenant if it is not going to be enforced?
The mention of Essendon is in reference to Truss recently approving (in concept) the 2013 Master Plan, see here
Q/ For those Essendon operators in the know, which runway is the DRAFT MP proposing to shorten??

Again top post AACCI & welcome to the ranks of the IOS...

ps Sunny maybe you should extend the distrust factor to include the Department and (by association until proven otherwise) the Miniscule...

Last edited by Sarcs; 29th May 2014 at 10:21.
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Old 29th May 2014, 11:47
  #708 (permalink)  
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The can of worms is offically open!

Excellent work AACCI, excellent factual post. And good follow up work Sarcs. The responses and obsfucation from Truss (and former bureaucrats), as well as the pooh that was flowing from Doherty and 'Pumpkin Head' undoubtedly proves that the issues go way beyond CAsA, ATSBeaker and ASA, the problems stem from the Miniscule through Infrastructure and down the chain. The can has truly opened for all to see.....

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Old 29th May 2014, 13:14
  #709 (permalink)  
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"I want to be known as an infrastructure prime minister" Tony Abbott.

well tony why don't you have a go at the total farce that is the government's approach to aviation. ....before we all lose our pants.

it is wasting you an unbelievable amount of money!
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Old 29th May 2014, 18:28
  #710 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2011
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If there were over 200 submissions critical of casa couldn't a legal firm start some sort of class action? Would it be possible under Australian legal system.
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Old 29th May 2014, 22:07
  #711 (permalink)  
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Maybe the only way forward is for the industry to go on strike. No bank runs, no milk runs, no training, no medical evacuations and most of all, no charters for politicians!
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Old 30th May 2014, 01:09
  #712 (permalink)  
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Fawcett vs MM's Aviation Airports mob cont/-

On M&M he sure bears a strong resemblance to Red...

Ever since Senator Fawcett first entered the parliament (July 2011) he has been on M&M's case on the lifeblood of GA, those pesky secondary & ALOP airports. Here is another example:

My error (FIMD) it appears that the Oz Flying article provided the answer to my...Q/ For those Essendon operators in the know, which runway is the DRAFT MP proposing to shorten??
Truss said he recognised there was significant interest within the community about the proposed investigation into the shortening of the airport's north-south runway.

“My approval of the 2013 Master Plan is not an approval for this proposal to proceed,” he pointed out.

“A decision on this proposal will only be reached after Essendon Airport completes a very detailed investigation involving examination of operational, safety and environmental impacts, including from aircraft noise.

“The outcome of this investigation will then need to be considered through the regulatory processes under the Airports Act 1996. A key component of these regulatory processes is public consultation.”

Truss said the Master Plan included significant non-aviation developments.

“However, I will not agree to any development which would compromise the use of Essendon for aviation,” he said.

“The Government is committed to supporting sustainable growth in civil aviation."
The miniscule's statement is interesting in light of the AACCI letter to him...

Oh well considering some Essendon operators are having probs pulling up on the other runway...

...I guess there will be intensive training, by certain operators, on shortfield landing technique...
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Old 30th May 2014, 10:23
  #713 (permalink)  
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You commented on Australia's ICAO appointments (ICAO Trough List), and I subsequently referred to the arrangements for those appointments:

See: http://www.infrastructure.gov.au/avi...nding_Aust.pdf

Paragraphs 8.1 and 8.2 set out the arrangements for appointment of the Council Representative and the nominee to the Air Navigation Commission.

Paragraph 8.5 is of interest, and states that it is the general expectation that the appointee will be from Infrastructure, Airservices Australia or CASA...
I think we might have missed an opportunity here with the ASRR Terms of Reference stated outcomes, that is (in particular):

The report of the review will (amongst other things):

•examine and make recommendations as required on the appointment process and criteria applied for key aviation safety roles within CASA and the ATSB;
Maybe it should have been argued that the ARRS should also have:

• examined and make recommendations as required on the appointment process and criteria applied for the arrangements for Australia's ICAO Council Representative and the nominee to the Air Navigation Commission.

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Old 30th May 2014, 10:50
  #714 (permalink)  
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A three card Monte.

Even so: despite the mumblings, jiggling, rolling upward of the eyes (à la Bob Hawke) deliberate efforts to muddy the water; sideways rambling answers; an inability to answer questions; a marked reluctance to honestly answer the questions; taking questions on notice, ignoring the millions of dollars down the gurgler; aircraft still manage, despite these people sitting about, not answering the questions; to get from A to B in reasonably good order.

These folk in front of 'our' committee, being so completely divorced from the real issues still manage to effectively play the same three card trick – Safety – Cost – Deniability. It's we; the stupid, vacuous ones: WE who keep paying them to do it, allow this farce to continue. Yet the Senate keeps asking the questions (we also pay for that); round and round it goes; again and again and yet, again. Where it stops – no one knows. (Unless Truss brings in a 'company man' – then we'll know). 5/4, odds on favourite ploy - says the wise money.

Listen to McComic and his medical 'guru'; whom, despite logical argument, despite empirical and "that other sort" (cracked up when McComic trotted that out) of evidence", despite research, despite logic: and, despite Fawcett almost pleading for 'sanity' – in the end, out roll the three trump Monte cards. Like a mantra: chanted over and over until a hypnotic trance is induced.

Want to see 'real' safety at work ?? – hop into a cockpit one dark and stormy at peak hour, watch a pro aircrew manage; or go to the ACC and watch the ATCO's at work. Now that's operational safety at a peak professional level, despite the rambling obfuscation, distraction and interference of the puerile; and the disconnected lunacy of the 'watchdog' from La la land..

Mantra : Safety – Cost – Deniability......Safety – Cost – Deniability....Safety – Cost – Deniability.

Safety -? show me one 'real value' safety initiative McComic and his happy band of word twisters have produced. Save you the trouble – there ain't any. Nothing to which McComic has contributed one jot of 'improvement'. Improvement is lumped onto the industry shovel; the kudos and bonuses are (of course) heading to the CASA myth bucket, never to be seen again until claimed. In every case, through CASA 'safety initiatives' the paper work has increased, the rules have become an even more complex pension benefit fund for needy legal types. The ethos of 'safety' box ticking continues off the chart. The operator, being half broke – having then managed to satisfy 'all' the CASA 'safety' requirements and paid handsomely for it; must send their exhausted troops; those at the coal face, to see to the 'real' issues which keep Mr and Ms Joe Public safe and in one piece. This while documenting every step taken, (just in case there is a case to answer). Selah.

Cost -? well sure, CASA have managed to escalate the costs to epic proportions and achieved what precisely?. After the CASA fiasco, the operator must face the small challenge of trying to make enough money to pay wages, satisfy investment and deal with the never ending FUBAR which everyday operational aviation dredges up; on a daily (if lucky) basis....

Deniability-?; Oh, top marks in this category. The ability to offset the blame for anything and everything – from a loose boot lace to a major incident, to an ICAO rip-off. The abilities – to artfully deflect criticism – and, the hide to demand more money for doing so is a remarkable achievement. They are so very, very good at it – even ICAO have swallowed the bait FCOL.

Aye well; I expect they'll all want a bigger bonus next year and a better budget – on account of doing such a bloody fine job. No doubt AAAA have had a rocket from the 'bored' for being outspoken and no doubt registered letters, carefully camouflaging the intent to attack those who dared speak out are in the Friday mail as we speak....

So predictable, so bloody mundane, so tragically, so ironically sad. Yet this sad mutt has the audacity to take on the likes of a well briefed Fawcett, head on. Just about says it all; don't it?.
O! reason not the need; our basest beggars
Are in the poorest thing superfluous:
Allow not nature more than nature needs,
Man’s life is cheap as beast’s.
Lear, for a change of pace – it being Friday and all.....
Irony, Tragic: The term applied to the situation, in Greek and other drama, in which the audience is aware of some impending catastrophe or important fact of which the characters are either totally ignorant or not fully aware, a condition rendered possible by the fact that Greek drama dealt with legends known to all the spectators. Irony has, of course, in this phrase the Greek meaning of 'dissembling'.

Last edited by Kharon; 30th May 2014 at 11:16. Reason: Back of the clock + an ale or perhaps two.
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Old 30th May 2014, 12:45
  #715 (permalink)  
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CAsA - The petard of aviation?

Yep, I am sure that 'CAsA' isn't actually an acronym, it is in fact another term for 'petard';

A petard was a small bomb used to blow up gates and walls when breaching fortifications, of French origin and dating back to the sixteenth century.[1] A typical petard was a conical or rectangular metal object containing 2–3 kg (5 or 6 pounds) of gunpowder, with a slow match as a fuse.

Petard comes from the Middle French peter, to break wind, from pet expulsion of intestinal gas, from the Latin peditus, past participle of pedere, to break wind, akin to the Greek bdein, to break wind (Merriam-Webster). Petard is a modern French word, meaning a firecracker (it is the basis for the word for firecracker in several other European languages).

Petardiers were used during sieges of castles or fortified cities. The petard, a rather primitive and exceedingly dangerous explosive device, consisted of a brass or iron bell-shaped device filled with gunpowder fixed to a wooden base called a madrier. This was attached to a wall or gate using hooks and rings, the fuse lit and, if successful, the resulting explosive force, concentrated at the target point, would blow a hole in the obstruction, allowing assault troops to enter.

The word remains in modern usage in the phrase hoist with one's own petard, which means "to be harmed by one's own plan to harm someone else" or "to fall into one's own trap," implying that one could be lifted up (hoist, or blown upward) by one's own bomb.

It is plain obvious that CAsA, Infrastructure and the Miniscules office expel petard on a daily basis, don't you think?

'Safe skies are flatus skies'

Last edited by 004wercras; 30th May 2014 at 22:32.
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Old 1st Jun 2014, 22:43
  #716 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
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TICK TOCK miniscule - Academia warning!

The following UNSW blog piece highlights that there is a lot more at stake than just the GA sector...

We’re flying into an aviation skills crisis, with safety under the radar

Safety matters: a review into aviation safety regulation is due to report this month. Contemplative imaging/Flickr, CC BY-NC-SA

At a recent Senate Committee inquiry into the future of Qantas, both major airlines deflected concerns about the quality and safety of offshored maintenance with assurances that the facilities are safe because Australia’s safety regulator, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), approved them.

Yet at precisely the same time another inquiry in which the effectiveness of CASA was central – the Aviation Safety Regulation Review – was being run out of the deputy prime minister’s office.

The inquiry was scheduled to report by the end of May. It now seems likely that given the difficulty and importance of the issues and the intensity of some of the industry submissions, the review will take longer. In an unusual move, the government has not made the 270-odd submissions available to the public.

Air travel, at least on the main intercity and international routes, is statistically the safest means of transport. Fatal crashes occur so rarely today, when set against the millions of passenger-kilometres flown every week, that the probability of any given flight ending in deaths is too small to be calculated by normal statistical techniques.

But the deadly runway crash of Asiana Airlines last year is a reminder to all of us – carriers and regulators included – that we cannot afford to take the safety of flying for granted. Accidents still do happen, and passenger safety is still not guaranteed even if there have been no recent crashes.

Indeed, a long period without a serious incident can increase the risk of safety buffers being eroded by cost-cutting and complacency.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently released its Safety Report for 2013 showing that across the world, 210 people lost their lives last year in 16 fatal accidents (not including hijackings or sabotage) involving commercial passenger or cargo flights. The average for the last five years was much higher at 517. While none of these accidents occurred in Australia, private and small-scale commercial flying here results in the loss of around a dozen lives in an average year.

CASA director John McCormick will leave the regulator at the end of August

Maintenance matters

A significant proportion of accidents result from errors or omissions in aircraft maintenance. According to the IATA statistics, maintenance “events” (i.e. specific operations that were done wrongly, or not done when required) contributed to 10% of the 432 accidents investigated between 2009 and 2013, while 29% involved some kind of aircraft malfunction. In other cases, shoddy maintenance procedures were identified as a “latent” factor contributing to the outcome.

In a time when intense competition is placing pressure on the world’s airlines to keep pushing down their operating costs, maintenance has been an obvious first resort for cost-saving, since unlike many other measures, it remains invisible to the passenger unless severely neglected.

Our research into the aircraft maintenance industry in Australia has exposed two key structural developments, both products of the increasingly cost-driven nature of the industry, which threaten to undo much of the progress made so far.

The first involves the worldwide trend to redefine the status of maintenance from part of the core business of running an airline to a standalone activity carried out by independent maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) firms. MRO is now a global industry, with hundreds of new businesses springing up every year in all parts of the world.

Most of these businesses undoubtedly provide quality service. But some, located in low-wage countries (including places like Latin America and the former Soviet republics which are still statistically the world’s most dangerous regions in which to fly) compete primarily on labour costs, often complemented by “light touch” regulation. They mainly do labour-intensive heavy maintenance, which is crucial for ensuring that aircraft structures remain free of cracks and corrosion.

The disastrous early US experience with such providers has left continuing question marks over this part of the industry. Even today, it is hard for airlines as customers to sort the good from the bad, among a rapidly expanding offering, without guidance from regulators. Indeed, Congress has forbidden US airlines to use “uncertificated” shops, and forced the FAA to upgrade its safety oversight of offshored maintenance.

By contrast CASA, leaving aside the occasional Senate inquiry, has largely enjoyed freedom from political pressure. But the shift to offshored maintenance has not been matched by a corresponding increase in resources allocated to safety oversight. Rather, there is a trend to accepting approvals from other countries’ regulatory authorities – in contrast to the more robust approach taken by the US.

There is also a growing tendency, in the words of IATA, to put “too much effort… into oversight of the documentation trail, rather than the work being physically performed on the aircraft”. Our research informants point to problems observed in some offshore MROs which would not be picked up by such an approach – for example, using non-approved tools in paint removal, which can damage aircraft skins causing tears in fuselages during flight.

The number of maintenance engineers Australia needs won’t arrive in time. Gerard Stolk/Flickr,

Looming skills crisis

The second, more insidious and less easily remedied threat involves worldwide underinvestment in developing an adequate skilled workforce to meet future maintenance needs. Both IATA and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) have researched future maintenance labour requirements and expressed concern at the escalating shortfall. According to the ICAO, world training capacity in 2010 was falling short by some 18,000 places every year of the number required to meet forecast minimum needs in 2030.

Worryingly, the shortfalls in training appear to be greatest in precisely those parts of the world to which Australian maintenance is most likely to be outsourced. The Asia-Pacific region as a whole is projected to train fewer than a quarter of the new aircraft technicians it will need to accommodate the requirements of its own national fleets.

Australia is no better placed to meet its own needs, with civilian apprentice commencements, net of wastage, in the March quarter of 2013 at the lowest point since records have been kept. On our calculations, apprentice completions (including Defence) in 2013 were running at only two-thirds the rate needed to keep the workforce at its 2011 size after allowing for normal attrition.

All this suggests a looming skills crisis which is already becoming apparent in some parts of the world. The giant Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company (HAECO) – to which Qantas only recently outsourced the heavy maintenance on its remaining 747s – reportedly saw a 21% decline in its net profit for the first half of 2013, attributed largely to difficulties in recruiting sufficient skilled technicians. In the US, a growing proportion of airlines are planning to bring more of their maintenance back on shore, partly to ensure security of supply, and partly because of the shrinking cost differential.

Australia is unprepared to meet this crisis and faces the threat of being forced by its limited market power into relying on second-rate providers. It seems inevitable that the shortage will result in greater use of unqualified personnel, work intensification for those skilled engineers who are available, and skimping on internal quality control.

There is every chance that such practices, if widely adopted, will bring about a reversal in the declining trend of fatal accidents – this despite the range of failsafes and self-monitoring capabilities being built into the latest generation of passenger aircraft, which in any case now seem unlikely to make up a significant part of the Australian fleet for another decade at least.

The standards issue is one that can be addressed by regulatory reform, and it will be interesting to see how the inquiry approaches it. The skills issue is too big to be fixed by regulation alone, and a remedy cannot be expected without serious structural reform of the Australian MRO sector. Such reform will require a serious interventionist approach by the Federal government – a prospect about which it is hard be optimistic.

View the UNSW ASRR submission here: http://www.aph.gov.au/DocumentStore....2&subId=205572

Sarcs is offline  
Old 2nd Jun 2014, 07:26
  #717 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Downunda
Posts: 559
* Red Flags *

In an unusual move, the government has not made the 270-odd submissions available to the public.
the Aviation Safety Regulation Review – was being run out of the deputy prime minister’s office.
Red flag number 1 - This action alone proves the Government is not interested in transparency or accountability. This should be ringing alarm bells for our industry, travelling public and other entities such as ICAO and the FAA. It is plainly obvious that the head of the fish is well and truly rotten.

By contrast CASA, leaving aside the occasional Senate inquiry, has largely enjoyed freedom from political pressure. But the shift to offshored maintenance has not been matched by a corresponding increase in resources allocated to safety oversight. Rather, there is a trend to accepting approvals from other countries’ regulatory authorities – in contrast to the more robust approach taken by the U.S
Red flag number 2 - Budget restraints have in the past stopped CAsA undertaking serious international audits and oversight of third party maintenance providers internationally. Taking people's word that maintenance is compliant flies in the face of robust and adequate oversight done on a physical basis. CAsA execs and can afford to go to Montreal every few months, but they can't afford to send Inspector Plod overseas for a guernsey at a maintenance org? Bollocks.

The below quote pretty well sums up what our masters of spin don't want the public to realise;
But the deadly runway crash of Asiana Airlines last year is a reminder to all of us – carriers and regulators included – that we cannot afford to take the safety of flying for granted. Accidents still do happen, and passenger safety is still not guaranteed even if there have been no recent crashes. Indeed, a long period without a serious incident can increase the risk of safety buffers being eroded by cost-cutting and complacency.
Indeed Miniscule, you and your minions are in a precarious predicament aren't you?

P.S Frank, nice photograph of Mr Angry above, would sit well on the back of your shitter door!!


Last edited by 004wercras; 2nd Jun 2014 at 07:40.
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Old 2nd Jun 2014, 10:16
  #718 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: australia
Posts: 1,002
We're flying into an aviation skills crisis, with safety under the radar
yr right is offline  
Old 2nd Jun 2014, 12:53
  #719 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: dans un cercle dont le centre est eveywhere et circumfernce n'est nulle part
Posts: 2,606

That's the bloke that bound me up in the first place. The natural laxative therapy that our small (m), minister provides works fine. However the photo does look like a cornered Koala. I wonder what would happen if someone poked him with a stick.

Last edited by Frank Arouet; 2nd Jun 2014 at 12:54. Reason: Looking for a sharp stick.
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Old 2nd Jun 2014, 22:20
  #720 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 7,482
The rule of law is becoming a joke in the USA and we are following exactly the same trail as evidenced by the ongoing corruption enquiries in NSW, the activities of the Speaker, Peter Slipper, Craig Thomson and now Geoff Shaw in Victoria.

To put it another way, once the law becomes subservient to political ends, as it has been in those Three cases, then we are too far down the slippery slope to make investments without "managing" (read bribery) the political dimension as in countries like Indonesia and New Guinea.

In other words,, you can no longer invest with some certainty about country risk.

CASA, as a Government entity, has armed itself with the regulatory tools to destroy any business it likes, without bothering about the rule of law, and if government continues to countenance that, then the GA industry is dead, and in the longer run so is GFA, RAA and SAAA.

Why? Because we exist not by law but by the whim of the regulator.
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