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Jetstar and Ballina again

Old 9th Apr 2022, 22:44
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Originally Posted by Colonel_Klink View Post
Well Lead, within the last 2 years Iíve operated numerous Rpt jet flights into BNA, and into MNG during lockdown when I picked up some part time work do the odd piece of IFR instructing.

So I actually think I am rather in tune to the issue.

It is still my firm belief that the BNA are should have Class D. But there are a few here that I am expecting will disagree with that too
I stand corrected.

If during those operations youíve not heard an over-transmitted or garbled broadcast, and youíve always been confident that youíve an accurate mind picture of all traffic in the BA, youíve been very lucky IMO.
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Old 10th Apr 2022, 00:26
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it’s time to start asking why.
Because it'll be bloody expensive. And don't say "then try paying for an accident". That's a theoretical. Actually building, manning, and running a TWR (and more than likely the extra associated low level E sector) will be a not inconsiderable ongoing cost (at government rates). While costs are recouped from the airlines via charges, it will not be possible to directly target BNA pax, so there would have to be a whole negotiation with industry as to any wholesale increase to cover those costs, with associated drawn out to-ing and fro-ing about cost benefits, and risk analysis, and all those previous studies by ASA that show one is not needed, so what's changed etc etc. I'm pretty sure they would not just absorb them. In ye olde days, the government had deep pockets. Now you have a cost conscious, stakeholder return driven business running things.
Infrastructure is expensive, and once you commit, you are stuck with it. Witness closed million dollar TWRs at Gove, Wagga, Port Hedland etc. Airlines are fickle beasts. They demand demand demand, then will drop something without a moments hesitation. That's why airports don't build things until they really really need them. You get burned by airline forecasts and industry promises a lot. Look at TMW, they'd never build a TWR there now, yet they've still got one to keep nothing but small turbo-props and bug smashers apart, and BNA doesn't, with 180 seat jets.

Last edited by Traffic_Is_Er_Was; 10th Apr 2022 at 00:50.
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Old 10th Apr 2022, 00:32
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Because it'll be bloody expensive. And don't say "then try paying for an accident". That's a theoretical.
However when the first mid-air happens what do you think will occur?
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Old 10th Apr 2022, 00:59
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ASA donít want to build another tower - they want the next one to be remote
Nail on the head there I reckon. They will be waiting for TWR 2.0.
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Old 10th Apr 2022, 01:03
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However when the first mid-air happens what do you think will occur?
Depends where it happens. I can see E being dropped first as the "easiest" fix.
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Old 10th Apr 2022, 14:06
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Nail on the head there I reckon. They will be waiting for TWR 2.0.
Information about, suggests that a remote tower is no cheaper to operate.

What is needed is an amendment to the Act that would allow contract (private) towers - that may be a cheaper option but is presently not an option.

As for BNA, a full length taxiway would be a good start.
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Old 11th Apr 2022, 06:42
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Originally Posted by Lead Balloon View Post
So: What did Australia use to have at places that are like BNA now, and who and what are stopping that happening now at BNA?
A great question!

The answer is that there used to be an airspace philosophy at the old DCA, guided as it was by the then requirement to keep fare-paying passengers safe. In a nut-shell, if it was RPT and had jets then controlled airspace (pre ICAO classification) was introduced. Hence, control towers suddenly popped up where FK28s were to operate, and in those days Control Towers had control area steps (no Ds Cs etc, just controlled airspace, of a type which later became Class B). This meant that Ballina would have looked like Coffs Harbour with one Controller controlling the aerodrome and the lower CTA steps (See Launceston, Hobart, Maroochydore, Alice Springs. Karratha, Broome, Hamilton Island and so on). This pretty much continued until the CAA came along and with it cost-recovery. I cannot remember the exact order, but Proserpine Tower was one of the first to go, and Gove and Port Hedland never opened.

Clearly the simplistic DCA philosophy was flawed however it had a basis in the experience of the then legislators. They were well aware of the widening speed gap between jet and non-jet aircraft. They were cognisant of the introduction of ATC in other parts of the world and knew the reasons why. Furthermore, they realised that traffic levels in Australia were constantly increasing, but above all, they were trying to stay ahead of the game. This last, in particular, seems to have disappeared from our airspace planning unless it involves city-based unmanned air taxis!

There was however one thing missing from the DCA philosophy, that was surveillance. I remember when the RAAF asked when DCA was going to introduce radar into Townsville and Darwin aerodromes (mid-70s). They were apparently told that radar was totally unnecessary, Australian controllers could do all that work in their heads with the assistance of a few scraps of cardboard. The rest is history, the RAAF took over all ATC (previously they just had runway controllers) at both joint-user airports and installed radar approach control.

So what is missing from the picture? It is almost certainly surveillance. Airservices wanted to dismantle their en-route radars 20 years ago but were forced to renew them all because they could not get an ADS-B mandate through CASA in the time-frame they wanted. Now that ADS-B is mandated you can guarantee that there will never be a new radar installation by Airservices, and the current J-curve will slowly fade away in much the same way as our navigation aids have disappeared.

The trouble is that the risk factors in Australian airspace are stubbornly staying ahead of the financial requirements of Airservices so "hope" has become the prime safety mitigation.
The warning signs are there but are being resolutely ignored by the organisations that are employed to recognise them. Does anyone seriously think that putting a short range (30NM) surveillance radar and control tower at Ballina is going to break the combined banks of Qantas, Jetstar, Virgin, Rex?
How about our three arms of Government living up to the trust the Australian people have in them? I quote:
  • The ATSB's function is to improve safety and public confidence in the aviation.......;
  • ........safety must always be CASA's 'most important consideration; and,
  • We [Airservices] provide a range of world-class services that allow safe and equitable access to our skies. Our primary focus is ensuring the safety of air travel - both in the air and on the ground
Is Ballina safe?


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Old 11th Apr 2022, 08:34
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Port Hedland tower did open and continued at Shire expense from 1992/3
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Old 11th Apr 2022, 09:20
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Originally Posted by Geoff Fairless View Post
A great question!

The answer is that there used to be an airspace philosophy at the old DCA, guided as it was by the then requirement to keep fare-paying passengers safe. In a nut-shell, if it was RPT and had jets then controlled airspace (pre ICAO classification) was introduced. Hence, control towers suddenly popped up where FK28s were to operate, and in those days Control Towers had control area steps (no Ds Cs etc, just controlled airspace, of a type which later became Class B). This meant that Ballina would have looked like Coffs Harbour with one Controller controlling the aerodrome and the lower CTA steps (See Launceston, Hobart, Maroochydore, Alice Springs. Karratha, Broome, Hamilton Island and so on). This pretty much continued until the CAA came along and with it cost-recovery. I cannot remember the exact order, but Proserpine Tower was one of the first to go, and Gove and Port Hedland never opened.

Clearly the simplistic DCA philosophy was flawed however it had a basis in the experience of the then legislators. They were well aware of the widening speed gap between jet and non-jet aircraft. They were cognisant of the introduction of ATC in other parts of the world and knew the reasons why. Furthermore, they realised that traffic levels in Australia were constantly increasing, but above all, they were trying to stay ahead of the game. This last, in particular, seems to have disappeared from our airspace planning unless it involves city-based unmanned air taxis!

There was however one thing missing from the DCA philosophy, that was surveillance. I remember when the RAAF asked when DCA was going to introduce radar into Townsville and Darwin aerodromes (mid-70s). They were apparently told that radar was totally unnecessary, Australian controllers could do all that work in their heads with the assistance of a few scraps of cardboard. The rest is history, the RAAF took over all ATC (previously they just had runway controllers) at both joint-user airports and installed radar approach control.

So what is missing from the picture? It is almost certainly surveillance. Airservices wanted to dismantle their en-route radars 20 years ago but were forced to renew them all because they could not get an ADS-B mandate through CASA in the time-frame they wanted. Now that ADS-B is mandated you can guarantee that there will never be a new radar installation by Airservices, and the current J-curve will slowly fade away in much the same way as our navigation aids have disappeared.

The trouble is that the risk factors in Australian airspace are stubbornly staying ahead of the financial requirements of Airservices so "hope" has become the prime safety mitigation.
The warning signs are there but are being resolutely ignored by the organisations that are employed to recognise them. Does anyone seriously think that putting a short range (30NM) surveillance radar and control tower at Ballina is going to break the combined banks of Qantas, Jetstar, Virgin, Rex?
How about our three arms of Government living up to the trust the Australian people have in them? I quote:
  • The ATSB's function is to improve safety and public confidence in the aviation.......;
  • ........safety must always be CASA's 'most important consideration; and,
  • We [Airservices] provide a range of world-class services that allow safe and equitable access to our skies. Our primary focus is ensuring the safety of air travel - both in the air and on the ground
Is Ballina safe?
The extent to which the airspace management function of government has deteriorated is (again) manifested in this statement of the ATSB in the Mangalore tragedy report:
Airservices Australia (Airservices) have proposed a change to the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) to introduce a surveillance flight information service (SFIS) around Mangalore Airport…
Similarly nonsensical statements were contained in a review of the Avalon-hump-on-the-camel airspace arrangements. One was to the effect that CASA make a proposal to Air Services that Air Services make a proposal to CASA.
You couldn’t make it up, except in Australia.


The airspace safety regulator (CASA OAR) sits, apparently staring into the middle distance, until a commercially-focussed monopoly Air Navigation Service Provider submits a proposal to the airspace safety regulator. And the supposed independent safety investigator regurgitates the nonsense, uncritically. (Of course, what’s really happening is that a mixture of mates and incompetents in Air Services, CASA OAR and ATSB scramble to work out WTF knee jerk will sweep each manifestation of fundamental problems in air space go away, at the least cost for the commercial ANSP).

Australians are very lucky that the diameter of the roulette wheel is very large. Air Services and CASA and ATSB are gambling on it, every day.
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Old 11th Apr 2022, 10:58
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Originally Posted by Lead Balloon View Post
Australians are very lucky that the diameter of the roulette wheel is very large. Air Services and CASA and ATSB are gambling on it, every day.
Funnily enough Air Services is located in the Alan Woods Building, right next door to the Canberra Casino.
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Old 11th Apr 2022, 11:23
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Originally Posted by Geoff Fairless View Post
A great question!

The answer is that there used to be an airspace philosophy at the old DCA, guided as it was by the then requirement to keep fare-paying passengers safe. In a nut-shell, if it was RPT and had jets then controlled airspace (pre ICAO classification) was introduced. Hence, control towers suddenly popped up where FK28s were to operate, and in those days Control Towers had control area steps (no Ds Cs etc, just controlled airspace, of a type which later became Class B). This meant that Ballina would have looked like Coffs Harbour with one Controller controlling the aerodrome and the lower CTA steps (See Launceston, Hobart, Maroochydore, Alice Springs. Karratha, Broome, Hamilton Island and so on). This pretty much continued until the CAA came along and with it cost-recovery. I cannot remember the exact order, but Proserpine Tower was one of the first to go, and Gove and Port Hedland never opened.

Clearly the simplistic DCA philosophy was flawed however it had a basis in the experience of the then legislators. They were well aware of the widening speed gap between jet and non-jet aircraft. They were cognisant of the introduction of ATC in other parts of the world and knew the reasons why. Furthermore, they realised that traffic levels in Australia were constantly increasing, but above all, they were trying to stay ahead of the game. This last, in particular, seems to have disappeared from our airspace planning unless it involves city-based unmanned air taxis!

There was however one thing missing from the DCA philosophy, that was surveillance. I remember when the RAAF asked when DCA was going to introduce radar into Townsville and Darwin aerodromes (mid-70s). They were apparently told that radar was totally unnecessary, Australian controllers could do all that work in their heads with the assistance of a few scraps of cardboard. The rest is history, the RAAF took over all ATC (previously they just had runway controllers) at both joint-user airports and installed radar approach control.

So what is missing from the picture? It is almost certainly surveillance. Airservices wanted to dismantle their en-route radars 20 years ago but were forced to renew them all because they could not get an ADS-B mandate through CASA in the time-frame they wanted. Now that ADS-B is mandated you can guarantee that there will never be a new radar installation by Airservices, and the current J-curve will slowly fade away in much the same way as our navigation aids have disappeared.

The trouble is that the risk factors in Australian airspace are stubbornly staying ahead of the financial requirements of Airservices so "hope" has become the prime safety mitigation.
The warning signs are there but are being resolutely ignored by the organisations that are employed to recognise them. Does anyone seriously think that putting a short range (30NM) surveillance radar and control tower at Ballina is going to break the combined banks of Qantas, Jetstar, Virgin, Rex?
How about our three arms of Government living up to the trust the Australian people have in them? I quote:
  • The ATSB's function is to improve safety and public confidence in the aviation.......;
  • ........safety must always be CASA's 'most important consideration; and,
  • We [Airservices] provide a range of world-class services that allow safe and equitable access to our skies. Our primary focus is ensuring the safety of air travel - both in the air and on the ground
Is Ballina safe?
Finally someone mentions the elephant in the room - surveillance (my bolding).
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Old 11th Apr 2022, 13:20
  #292 (permalink)  
 
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News just in!!... AirServices release photo of futuristic new TWR proposal for BNA! AirServices CEO quoted as saying "Air Services is proud to once again demonstrate it is the leading provider of ATC services in the world".

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Old 11th Apr 2022, 15:37
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AAARRRGGHH !!

MORE steam 'Blue'.....me light's gone out......
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Old 12th Apr 2022, 00:49
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Griffo, you're wanted. Busso here you come!
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