Australia, New Zealand & the Pacific Airline and RPT Rumours & News in Australia, enZed and the Pacific

Jetstar and Ballina again

Old 26th Mar 2022, 11:42
  #181 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PoppaJo View Post
So basically a whole heap of luck saved the day. The what’s being done as a result section, living up to its name again, ie doing nothing.

https://www.atsb.gov.au/media/578101...-062-final.pdf
... current Ballina Airport airspace review (due for release in February 2022) ... Source: Australian Transport Safety Bureau.
Seems odd that ATSB would release their report when the CASA Airport airspace review is overdue.

and, Additionally, CASA has developed an airspace risk modelling system (ARMS) that should provide an enhanced capability to consider transiting aircraft. Source: Australian Transport Safety Bureau. My bolding - should, one would've thought will rather than should.

I thought it odd that the report didn't include the relative positions of the aircraft when VGP was leaving controlled airspace, nor any commentary of whether 7456 was detected by the ATC radar system (TAAATS).
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Old 26th Mar 2022, 12:20
  #182 (permalink)  
 
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"I thought it odd that the report didn't include the relative positions of the aircraft when VGP was leaving controlled airspace, nor any commentary of whether 7456 was detected by the ATC radar system (TAAATS)."

yes it is odd also to have no commentary on what would have been on the screen pre SFIS and what differences if any with SFIS ?
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Old 26th Mar 2022, 21:21
  #183 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by LostontheLOC View Post
Sometimes it feels like getting blood from a rock here on PPRuNe, I shouldn't expect anything different.

Anything you can give mate, how your operator handles it and what you use at mitigating tools to help not go head first into a PA44 doing a circling approach in VMC 1inop just cause?

Is there any reports or atsb submissions on these instances?
https://www.atsb.gov.au/publications...r/ao-2021-038/

What extra can you do? Our pilots are just being taught to treat it like a normal CTAF and communicate like you would anywhere else. Don't trust SFIS to give you updated traffic information, because they won't. Contact other aircraft directly for their intentions, because the SFIS controller won't tell you. SFIS only seem to be there in case of a rogue aircraft that hasn't broadcast on the CTAF.

Last edited by VH-FTS; 28th Mar 2022 at 03:13.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 00:14
  #184 (permalink)  
 
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If only there were a transport safety investigatory body in Australia whose job it is to improve transport safety. Oh, wait…

(PS: VH-FTS: “rouge” = red powder or cream which you put on your cheeks in order to give them more colour. The order of letters sometimes changes meaning.)
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 05:07
  #185 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by cLeArIcE View Post
If it's not a cloudy, ugly type of IMC type of day, Its definitely a call in sick duty for me. Horrendous place. I'd never let my family fly into Ballina and I try to warn my friends etc. We all knew it's going to happen, it's just a matter of time. My threat mitigation actions just ensure it won't be me.
Wow, an individual mitigator. How about ASA provides a Class D Tower, or the regulations get changed so that an aerodrome owner can provide a control service.

Last edited by sunnySA; 28th Mar 2022 at 07:45.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 06:01
  #186 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by sunnySA View Post
Wow, an individual mitigator. How about ASA provides a Class D Tower, or the regulations get changed so that an aerodrome owner can provide a controller service.
I never said it was a good thing to do,nor did it ever say "I do XXX, so I don't care what happens at Ballina." The reality of the situation is despite numerous qualified professionals In the industry (all more knowledge and experienced than myself) trying to get a tower at Ballina, Airlines trying and numerous avoidable incidents (that continue to occur) no one important is listening. That leaves me to conclude one of 3 things.. 1. The system is completely corrupt and someone important with $$ and power doesn't want a tower.
2. This "safety is our number one concern" mantra is actually just bullsh*t and the cost of a few hundred death's at Ballina is an acceptable cost versus the cost Of putting in a tower.
3. The people in charge of our industry are just blind incompetent morons that would be Better suited to running a bank or being a member of parliament.
I don't know the answer, nor can I control any of the above.
What I can do is have some balls and make my own decisions to best protect my passengers and crew. It's not much, but it's something.
​​​​​​
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 06:25
  #187 (permalink)  
 
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What I can do is have some balls and make my own decisions to best protect my passengers and crew.
I don't disagree with your points and no judgement on your decisions to call in sick as I am sure many do. However the only person you are protecting is yourself. Another crew will still operate the service and be exposed to the vagaries of Ballina. My ultimate mitigation is if it gets too busy is to just divert to the Gold Coast. So far I haven't arrived at that point. I have a few other things that I do to mitigate the threat. No visual circuits, no RNP approaches on VMC days and no taxiing on runways conducting checks and running checklists.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 06:32
  #188 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by cLeArIcE View Post
I never said it was a good thing to do,nor did it ever say "I do XXX, so I don't care what happens at Ballina." The reality of the situation is despite numerous qualified professionals In the industry (all more knowledge and experienced than myself) trying to get a tower at Ballina, Airlines trying and numerous avoidable incidents (that continue to occur) no one important is listening. That leaves me to conclude one of 3 things.. 1. The system is completely corrupt and someone important with $$ and power doesn't want a tower.
2. This "safety is our number one concern" mantra is actually just bullsh*t and the cost of a few hundred death's at Ballina is an acceptable cost versus the cost Of putting in a tower.
3. The people in charge of our industry are just blind incompetent morons that would be Better suited to running a bank or being a member of parliament.
I don't know the answer, nor can I control any of the above.
What I can do is have some balls and make my own decisions to best protect my passengers and crew. It's not much, but it's something.
​​​​​​
By saying “one” of three things, you’re setting up a false trichotomy. It’s actually a combination of all three, to a lesser or greater extent.

Beancounters in Air Services and the airlines don’t want to do anything other than put band-aides over the ugly, running sore. ATSB and CASA are either unwilling or unable to say anything critical about the ugly, running sore. It’s not ‘corruption’, in the sense that no one’s getting bags of cash to look the other way (so far as I can tell), but it’s ‘corruption’ in the sense that every government body responsible for ‘safety’ is either unwilling or unable to call it for what it is: An ugly running sore.

Safety is our highest priority has always been a vacuous motherhood statement. Part of the ‘corruption’ is that Air Services and ATSB and CASA are unwilling or unable to speak it’s name: Affordable safety. As alphacentauri says, frequently: the risk of the loss of an RPT aircraft in a mid-air at places like Ballina are not zero. But no one in Air Services or ATSB or CASA will state what those probabilities are or why it’s not ‘worth’ the cost of reducing them by doing something other than putting band-aides over the ugly, running sore.

Three is a lot less likely. Almost all of the people involved are very, very smart. Some are cunning, too. Like a rat. There’s always money to be made out of saying that safety is the highest priority but doing stuff that saves money. Fortunately for the travelling public, the diameter of the roulette wheel at places like Ballina is very large.

However, we can all make a pretty accurate prediction as to what those punters would say if they knew. We can be certain as to what their loved ones will say if the number on the roulette wheel comes up 00. And we can be certain as to who will be blamed by Air Services and CASA, while ATSB stares into the middle distance.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 07:00
  #189 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Lookleft View Post
I don't disagree with your points and no judgement on your decisions to call in sick as I am sure many do. However the only person you are protecting is yourself. Another crew will still operate the service and be exposed to the vagaries of Ballina. My ultimate mitigation is if it gets too busy is to just divert to the Gold Coast. So far I haven't arrived at that point. I have a few other things that I do to mitigate the threat. No visual circuits, no RNP approaches on VMC days and no taxiing on runways conducting checks and running checklists.
Yes you are correct. It does protect me (either my life or licence) and I wish the next crew did not operate in there either.
I agree 100% regarding your own suggestions. I've never done it, but have heard of folks diverting to OOL due traffic. I also dislike when people do that RNP onto 24 (in VMC) from the south, especially when there is a perfectly good RNAV that has a published hold. Good points about the checks at the holding point as well. I guess we can just all do our best to mitigate the risk in our own way and hope it's enough. I just find the fact that we even have to have this conversation sad and frustrating.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 07:45
  #190 (permalink)  
 
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"The cost".....of a healthy, young Aussie (or non-Aussie, or Indigenous Aussie for the PC Brigade) with 40 years ahead of them is currently $5,100,000AUD according to the PMs Department.

What would E over D and a Tower cost to implement and operate at Ballina? More or less than a couple of fatalities from two Cessna's coming together? What about a Jabiru and an A320, or a '208 and a 737 with 100POB? There's half-a-billion right there...

We all know the risk, and we will all say "I told you so...." when, not if, the inevitable happens.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 08:06
  #191 (permalink)  
 
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Beancounters in Air Services and the airlines don’t want to do anything other than put band-aides over the ugly, running sore. ATSB and CASA are either unwilling or unable to say anything critical about the ugly, running sore. It’s not ‘corruption’, in the sense that no one’s getting bags of cash to look the other way (so far as I can tell), but it’s ‘corruption’ in the sense that every government body responsible for ‘safety’ is either unwilling or unable to call it for what it is: An ugly running sore.t​
It's actually noone in the responsible organisation(s) wants to be accountable for the decision. So what they do is make no decision and then pile a bunch of reports in front of them as a wall of protection saying that " we came to the conclusion there was no evidence that a tower was necessary and here are all the reports justifying our position"

That will be their defense in a Royal Commission if there is 200 fatalities in a mid air.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 08:29
  #192 (permalink)  
 
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Being able to make no decision and avoid accountability for the consequences is, itself, a form of 'corruption'. It's the main problem.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 09:17
  #193 (permalink)  
 
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All 3 agencies are waiting for it to happen, get it out of the way so to speak. I mean, it's inevitable right? The reason it hasn't happened so far is luck.

When it does happen the country will be plied with examples of it happening overseas and it was inevitable that it was going to happen here, just a matter of time. and that we need to get used to the fact that you can't eliminate all risk. The airspace system will then need to change to increase safety. Maybe then privatised towers will be allowed with an appropriate level of renumeration for the level of traffic and complexity. Real world economic decisions can then be made about commission/decommission. You know, punters decide that Byron is a shithole and they'd rather holiday at King Island, close the tower.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 09:21
  #194 (permalink)  
 
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Some pretty interesting points.

It’s nothing short of a disgrace that a tower at BNK isn’t even being contemplated. I still fail to see how the current work around is supposed to increase safety on what was previously there.

I operate into BNK and find the best days are days like today. When the vis is about 4000m and the cloud is a couple hundred feet above the minima - that way no one else is around.

Unfortunately things are only going to get worse there as well. It is proving a very popular destination, and during peak periods it’s not uncommon for VA / JQ to have 5 flights a day from both MEL and SYD.

A few weeks back, every bay was occupied and a JQ 320 was stuck on a taxiway waiting for a bay to free up. We were very lucky another RPT jet arrival didn’t land as there was literally nowhere else to go.

I wonder if someone far more eloquent than me would perhaps be best writing to 4 Corners and try and get them to do an episode on what is a clear and unacceptable risk to the public. It’s usually after a massive public uproar after one of these TV shows airs that something usually gets done ASAP.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 21:02
  #195 (permalink)  
 
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I'll give it a crack...

Would you believe that, in Australia in the 21st century, you can be a passenger on an airliner in airspace that is not under air traffic control, flying to and from airports that have no control tower? And would you believe that at the same time you can be sharing the skies with aircraft that are not certified airworthy by the aviation safety authority – CASA - being flown by pilots who are neither licensed nor certified as medically fit by CASA?

Believe it or not, it happens every day in Australia in the 21st century.

And would you believe that, when ‘near miss’ incidents occur in the airspace around these airports, the government body whose function it is to investigate the incidents and make recommendations to improve aviation safety – the ATSB - is unwilling or unable even to mention the mere possibility that the evident risks to airline passengers might be reduced if the airliners were instead under air traffic control? Believe it or not, four people recently died in a mid-air collision of aircraft that were fitted with equipment mandated to make their precise location and altitude visible on the radar screens of air traffic controllers, and the ATSB has been unwilling or unable even to mention the mere possibility that the collision might have been avoided if the aircraft had been under air traffic control rather than left to their own devices until the blips on the radar screens merged.

Australia’s claimed enviable air safety record is as much about good luck as it is good management. Hoping that the luck lasts is no way to run airspace in the 21st century.
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Old 28th Mar 2022, 21:57
  #196 (permalink)  
 
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LB, spot on......
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Old 29th Mar 2022, 00:44
  #197 (permalink)  
 
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There are plenty of journos who look over this forum and LB has just written the promo for a 4 Corners or even A Current Affair but none of them will pick it up because the general public would not be interested. That is until something catastrophic happens then there will be all the outrage in the world at how could this possibly happen in a place like Australia. So the challenge to anyone in the media is, do you want to do serious journalism or continue with faux investigations on petrol prices?
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Old 29th Mar 2022, 01:12
  #198 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Lookleft View Post
There are plenty of journos who look over this forum and LB has just written the promo for a 4 Corners or even A Current Affair [won’t] pick it up because the general public would not be interested…
I’m not sure about that.
I think most of the general public assume that there would be some form of ‘air traffic control’ where RPT operates in Australia.
The knowledge that their safety is partly dependent on the uncertain diligence of Joe Bloggs in his Jabiiru would be pretty alarming to many.
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Old 29th Mar 2022, 01:31
  #199 (permalink)  
 
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I have raised the issue of CTAFs before with said bodies and the replies are much the same, if people follow the rules, communicate, have trans on, then then what’s the problem. In a perfect world I get the point, however CTAF is largely full of training or low hour pilots. No criticism to them, I was one of those many years ago. However my problems in recent times are things like old mate in the circuit who is not maintaining said height for his class of aircraft and is moving into my territory. Turning base at Ballina I was cut off by someone first solo with no radio call, turning final oh shit there he is in front for me for now number 1. I lost patience and we got out of the place and starting holding until they could sort themselves out. Having an argument with another pilot on the CTAF on why they want the the whole circuit with his students to use the tailwind direction, with 80T me wanting into the wind. People in the training area who turn the volume down whilst they conduct all sorts of air work with me asking questions and no reply. The list goes on and on. My hair gets less and less.

Needless to say we brief like the shit is always going to hit the fan before we enter these areas.
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Old 29th Mar 2022, 02:23
  #200 (permalink)  
 
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I live in the area and fly GA as a lowly weekend warrior. Quite frankly, Ballina is a scary place to be at times. No taxiway, a stupid mix of traffic in the circuit and area, and way too many airfields nearby all sharing the same frequency.

In January 2022, Ballina was the 13th most popular airport in Australia for revenue pax movements at 72,620 (source: BITRE). That's more than:

DARWIN
NEWCASTLE
MACKAY
KARRATHA
ROCKHAMPTON
ALICE SPRINGS
AYERS ROCK

In the 12 months to January 2022, Ballina was the 15th most popular airport in Australia for revenue pax movements at 537,135. That's more than:

NEWCASTLE
KARRATHA
ROCKHAMPTON
ALICE SPRINGS
AYERS ROCK

In 2021, Ballina had 5,992 RPT aircraft movements. For the FY20/21 year, it was 16th in the country for RPT aircraft movements, despite COVID lockdowns.

...and yet, mysteriously, control towers remain in places like Coffs (almost half the movements), Albury (less than half), and many more!
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