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Ballina a Mess

Old 15th Mar 2018, 07:59
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Ballina a Mess

Ballina has problems, don’t you reckon? Have your say, anyone else that uses it.
There is ATC “directed traffic information”, there’s a CAGRS and there’s a CTAF. sometimes you’re getting your information 3 times. But still there’s no one saying, “Right, you go first, then you, then you.” Sometimes everyone holds out, not quite sure of what the others are doing. Then the whole traffic picture is changed, traffic following that wasn’t relevant closes in and further complicates things. The big problem for mine is the lack of a parallel taxiway. That departures for 24 occupy the runway for the backtrack. Similarly landings on 06. And the breeze is so often across the strip and doesn’t dictate that one direction or the other is optimal. It probably doesn’t have the traffic to justify a tower, and the industry doesn’t want to pay anyway, but it can get pretty hairy, especially when access directions are severely limited by activation of Evans Head Restricted Areas immediately south.
Comments from RPT jet crew might be enlightening......?
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Old 15th Mar 2018, 10:32
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DIRD PAX figures for 2017 calendar year 509579 passengers <https://bitre.gov.au/publications/ongoing/airport_traffic_data.aspx>
Latest Australian Airspace Policy Statement 2015 states ATC should be introduced at 91,000 total movements, or 15,000 PTO or 350,000 Pax
Table 1. Airspace Criteria Thresholds

Class B
Class C
Class D
Service provided
ATC
ATC
ATC
Total annual aircraft movements
750,000
400,000
80,000
Total annual PTO aircraft movements
250,000
30,000
15,000
Total annual PTO passengers
25 million
1 million
350,000
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Old 15th Mar 2018, 14:02
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Case closed (as I told Dick some months ago...).
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Old 16th Mar 2018, 10:42
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Two Fifty. I have spoken to airline pilots who have similar views to you. They reckon Ballina is an accident waiting to happen.

Imagine if the airline passengers knew that pilots had to call in the blind and become their own air traffic controllers as they attempt to arrange separation in IMC from up to three or more other aircraft?

Will we have to have an accident first? Then changes are made.

They can’t lower the E because CASA will not allow rules that would enable low level E to work correctly!
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Old 16th Mar 2018, 10:58
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Rubbish Dick, read 250's post again. NO mention of IMC self-segregation issues. The issues that are mentioned will not be solved by your beloved E, and in fact will make it worse, as the IFRs will have to be 1/controlled by ATC until out of E and 2/still have to self-segregate with VFRs IN THE CIRCUIT and ON THE RUNWAY.

When will you ever get it??

Put in a tower!! I would hazard a guess and say the reason there is no tower at the moment is because you don't support one. I reckon though that deep down, you know it is the right thing, don't you? 500k pax with a huge mix of types. Makes KTA look like a walk in the park...
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Old 16th Mar 2018, 11:14
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Aye Cap'n,

I suspect that KTA is a 'walk in the park' simply because most /all of the movements there are by professional pilots, who 'know the system', (for better or for worse) and act accordingly....

Helos do 'their' thing and the fixed wing do 'theirs'... n'est-ce-pas?.....

Cheers
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Old 16th Mar 2018, 11:43
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Griffo, I would agree with that summation. That is not to say I am denigrating our VFR friends. It's just that the whole situation becomes much easier when we have similar performance and the machines are bigger, because that means for the same number of pax there are less of them. It is a fact of life that the more aeroplanes, the harder everything becomes, especially when there are large speed differences combined with possibly less-experienced pilots.

I do agree with 250's comment about the lack of a parallel taxiway. That would singularly bring a massive improvement in "efficiency" aka safety. They make life so much easier.

BTW, my 18yo French expert says that you need to brush up on your French!
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Old 16th Mar 2018, 14:14
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Originally Posted by Capn Bloggs View Post
BTW, my 18yo French expert says that you need to brush up on your French!
My French educated (and slightly senior than 18yo) girlfriend reckons: "Isn't it so?" to be: "N'est-ce pas?".

Confirming what I thought that I learnt at school.

Geez, Bloggs.. Punching above your weight, these days?
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Old 16th Mar 2018, 14:31
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That isn't what s/he told me it meant! And s/he won the French prize! Words will be had...

Griffo, I do profusely apologise. As compensation, how'd you like an all-expenses-paid sojourn to Hippysville aka Ballina CAGRO? Take your Tiger. But make sure you have your ADS-B on, so the controller can see you and give my mates traffic alerts on you.
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Old 16th Mar 2018, 16:29
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I was more wurried about your 18 yo 'French expert' Cap'n.......

photos...?

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Old 17th Mar 2018, 13:24
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Bloggs....brush teeth, find old spice bottle, don't wilt under the pressure.......Your last French mistress was waaaay too fast for many a grown man.........

Last edited by The Banjo; 17th Mar 2018 at 14:02.
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Old 18th Mar 2018, 09:47
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Here you go, Griffo, bit rough around the edges (she takes after her mother!), but good at French, or so I thought!!



Banjo, yes, I think I would be eating her dust now.

Anyway, where are the usual suspects? My suggestion of a tower might be a bit close to home, eh but?
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Old 18th Mar 2018, 10:56
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Just in case I rate as one of the ‘usual suspects’, and in any event for the purposes of entertainment...

I’m watching and waiting for the announcement that a tower will be established at Ballina, in accordance with your “suggestion” and the establishment criteria.

You’ll forgive me if I neither bet folding money on it happening nor hold my breath until it happens.

And Griffo: KTA works because it exists in splendid isolation from the real world - a Galapagos within a Galapagos, in which an AFIZ can be just about whatever dimensions those in the heart of darkness choose and the rules are set by Cap’n ‘Colonel Kurtz’ Bloggs.

When do you expect a tower to be established at Ballina, Bloggs?
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Old 18th Mar 2018, 11:09
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Originally Posted by Led Balon
KTA works because it exists in splendid isolation from the real world - a Galapagos within a Galapagos, in which an AFIZ can be just about whatever dimensions those in the heart of darkness choose and the rules are set by Cap’n ‘Colonel Kurtz’ Bloggs.
KTA has a class D tower.
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Old 18th Mar 2018, 11:24
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Indeed it does.

I’m just waiting to see how long it takes for Griffo to confirm that KTA’s the location to which he intended to refer.

It’s hardly surprising that an aerodrome with a tower is a ‘walk in the park’. For any pilot.

When do you anticipate that a tower will be established at Ballina?
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Old 18th Mar 2018, 13:23
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Oh.... Dear.........

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Old 18th Mar 2018, 21:07
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In that event...

How’s putting in a tower at Ballina going to help? There are many more movements at Ballina by ‘unprofessional’ pilots who don’t ‘know the system’. If you intended to refer to KTA, you seemed to be suggesting that KTA is a ‘walk in the park’ not because of the tower, but rather because of the lack of ‘unprofessional’ pilots.

BTW Bloggs: Are you advocating for a tower in C or D?
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Old 18th Mar 2018, 23:01
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Prior to a Tower service being provided, the Council should cough up and build a taxiway to each of the thresholds. This will improve efficiency and safety.
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Old 19th Mar 2018, 01:41
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Simple economics. How much would the taxyways cost. Then work out how much per year and divide by the number of passengers.

If less than $5 per pax it’s a no brainer!
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Old 19th Mar 2018, 02:22
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It really needs a tower and should be controlled.

Having flown in there for the last decade in turboprops and jets, it can be risky and on busy weekends can get downright dangerous especially with everything from narrowbody jets to ultralights and helicopters in the mix.

Usually the smaller stuff is training / recreation and the radio comms aren’t always stellar. Atc will tell ya theres numerous VFR paints when leaving CTA but half the time they don’t respond to your inbound calls and then your workload goes up dramatically trying to contact everyone to work out their intentions etc.

Tcas has prevented numerous near-misses (and possible collisions?) but it shouldn’t have to come down to that. It’s 2018, we think as Aussies we’re at the tip of the sword in aviation but really we ain’t. Perhaps time to get with the program?
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