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Birdsville races. No Underwing Camping

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Birdsville races. No Underwing Camping

Old 3rd Mar 2021, 09:23
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Birdsville races. No Underwing Camping

The North West Star newspaper has reported that the Diamantina Council is to ban underwing camping at the 2021 Birdsville Races. This decision is apparently based on safety and security.

I have been to more than one or two race meets and have never had any issue with safety or security camping under my aircraft at the airport.

The fact that there is a wire fence and one has to have both an ASIC card and a local airport race card to get to or off the airport and ones aircraft prevents just anyone getting to enter the airport and steal from my tent, beside any valuables I lock in my aircraft.

The council has not said what they propose that visiting aviators should do. Are they to be transported to the riverside where the prospect of safety and gear security will be open to anyone?

Who and how are aviators to be transported to and from town during the event? Any hour of the day or night? How many trips will it take to get all your gear from the airport to the river camping? There has been no hard top accomm in town. That was booked out 2-3 years ago.

Any toilets or showers down there?

I think that this idea of no underwing camping is poorly thought out. If it is to be brought in it will discourage a lot of flyers from going to the event.

For anyone planning to go to the 2021 Birdsville races email the Diamantina Council and express your views.

I think that if this rule goes ahead there will be a lot less flyers at the 2021 Birdsville races.

runway16 is offline  
Old 3rd Mar 2021, 13:57
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I don’t need or require some fool local councillor or bureaucrat to keep me safe, look after my aircraft or guard my valuables. That’s my job, not theirs. Security? It’s Birdsville FFS!
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Old 3rd Mar 2021, 14:02
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under wing sleeping - WDL Ian Hodgson at Birdsville 1977
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Old 3rd Mar 2021, 16:30
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Strewth. Presumably the local health and safety folk have just discovered that some aircraft have fuel vents on or under the wings.


Two campers are talking at night. One says to the other, "As you look up and see all the billions of stars, do you ever wonder about the enormity of the universe; the unimaginable size and distances; the massive thermonuclear stars burning for millions of years; and the true majesty of it all?"

The other says "No, I wonder who stole our bloody tent while we were asleep"!
.
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Old 3rd Mar 2021, 21:20
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Does the Council smell money here? The cost of everyone off the airfield camping elsewhere won’t be free or even cheap.
Sounds like a brain fart to me. How to bugger up an iconic outback event , disorganised by people who think they’re business managers or something special.
All councils these days seem to be forgetting their reason for their existence, which was to look after citizens in a democratic manner...instead of the dictatorial crap we get now.

what other venues worth a visit. Mt Isa rodeo. Races other than BDV?

Like to gassed budgie. You got it.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 06:29
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Pilots angry over Birsdville ban on sleeping under the wing

Birdsville Airport has previously become a camping ground for pilots during the town’s annual race week, but not in 2021. Picture: Bruce LongThe decades-long tradition of *pilots camping under the wing of their aircraft at the Birdsville Races has been banned by the council in a move declared “un-Australian” by veteran aviator Dick Smith.

The entrepreneur is leading calls to have the Diamantina Shire Council’s ban overturned, before the race meeting in September. Council imposed the ban because of the cost involved in operating a “special events zone” at the Birdsville airstrip.
Owen Ruschen and Ian Dewick, camping next to their plane, flew in from Wagga.Diamantina chief executive Leon Love said under the airstrip’s tier-three security status, council would have to provide 24-7 *security and install fenced *walkways. “Those type of requirements have always been there but council is more risk averse and its insurers have become more risk averse,” he said. “Higher standards equals higher cost, and council also provides amenities, collects rubbish, empties portaloos, and all of those things combined cost us more than the landing fees we collect during that week.”

He said the council took the view the operation of the airstrip should be cost neutral in race week, and eliminating the special events zone achieved that.

“Maintaining a multimillion-dollar airport on a shoestring budget, something’s got to give,” he said.

Mr Smith said the ban *appeared to be an “over-reaction” and he was hopeful it could be reversed.

He said there was nothing more Australian than flying to the outback town and sleeping under the wing.

“First climbing Ayers Rock (Uluru) was banned and now this. You wonder what’s next?” he said.

“Now pilots going to Birdsville will have to carry all their stuff to another camping area where it’s completely packed with people who know nothing about aviation.”

Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association executive director Ben Morgan said they were hopeful of finding a solution to the problem facing council and would work together if possible.

A petition launched by AOPA opposing the ban had attracted more than 2000 signatures in 48-hours, and Mr Morgan said the issue highlighted a bigger problem for general aviation.

“It needs to be stressed, this is a critical moment in time. We need to implement a solution that will enable events at remote airstrips,” Mr Morgan said.

Already a “boycott Birdsville” hashtag was circulating pilot groups on social media, to the concern of local business operators.

Birdsville Hotel owner and pilot Talia Ellis, said the races were critically important to the whole region this year after being cancelled in 2020 due to COVID.

“When people fly out to Birdsville, most do so because they can camp out under their wing,” Ms Ellis said.

“There’s lots of little towns that benefit with them stopping and refuelling, staying over night. It won’t only be Birdsville and the races that are impacted if this ban goes ahead.”

She said there had been no safety breaches in the past to warrant such action and she was hopeful they could find a way to make it happen.

“There is another way to skin a cat so to speak, so we think they can resolve the issues in a financially viable way,” said Ms Ellis.

“There’s a lot of passionate people in the aviation industry who would be keen to help in any way they can.”
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 06:36
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Not so sure it’s the council per se.
I suspect the master puppeteer is an RPT airline that’s banging on about security to the hapless Diamantina Council in order to tick some boxes in yet another of their tin pot audits devised by their Safety&Security department.

Those dodgy Aviation degrees and their proud holders have spelled the death of common sense and fun in aviation.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 08:26
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Originally Posted by lucille View Post
Not so sure it’s the council per se.
I suspect the master puppeteer is an RPT airline that’s banging on about security to the hapless Diamantina Council in order to tick some boxes in yet another of their tin pot audits devised by their Safety&Security department.

Those dodgy Aviation degrees and their proud holders have spelled the death of common sense and fun in aviation.

.....well they have taken the common sense and fun out of everything else!
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 09:04
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Just cancel the whole thing!

I remember the Archerfield Airshow got cancelled some years back because the authorities deemed everyone needed an ASIC to be on the field!

We really do have some dimwits trying to run these things!
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 09:45
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Doesn't surprise me, it is Australia after all, a nation full of corruption, a third world nation with a first world facade!
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 11:59
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Lucille has hit the nail fair and square on the head.
A certain RPT operator has an out of control security puke who went around threatening airports that they would discontinue RPT services if the airport operator went ahead with security de-regulation under the Department of Home Affairs advice. For those that fought back, that airline was soon put in its place.
And coincidentally, that same airline has Birdsville on its route network.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 12:17
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Archerfield Airshow
I was on the AF Chamber of Commerce and I could not get on the airfield to go to my office.
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 12:33
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Welcome back, LeadSled. You've been missed!
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Old 4th Mar 2021, 13:10
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I have just been able to check and Birdsville was earmarked to be removed from the list of security controlled airports this would have happened in the final months of last year. So if they are still enforcing ASIC display requirements I'd suggest my hypothesis above is correct.

Last edited by Roy Nolland; 9th Mar 2021 at 10:58.
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Old 5th Mar 2021, 00:53
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What a load of nanny state bullshit, regardless of who thought up the idea.

Yes there are alternative outback events to Birdsville. Some years ago we went to the Bedourie camel races and were very well looked after by the pilot-friendly publican who even took us on a local sightseeing trip.
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Old 5th Mar 2021, 04:59
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Their heart is truly in the country.
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Old 5th Mar 2021, 08:29
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As we are talking about Birdsville - here's an image from the 70s
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Old 5th Mar 2021, 19:25
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descol. Thanks for posting the photo. Brings back many memories of the good old years when flying was simpler and the biggest worry was getting through on HF to cancel SAR.

ps.. you don’t happen to have any other aerial shots going in any northwards direction from BDV up to the gulf and westwards to the WA border do you? In a pre smart phone era, no one had cameras and in any case we couldn’t afford the film and processing. Maybe, not so halcyon days after all. 😜
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Old 5th Mar 2021, 22:42
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Perhaps my memory is failing and I haven't been to the event for many years, but I seem to recall this issue arose back then and a ban of some sort put on re camping at aircraft due to some idiots starting camp fires near their aircraft and sparks flying around and making others nervous.
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Old 5th Mar 2021, 22:49
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Originally Posted by Piston_Broke View Post
Perhaps my memory is failing and I haven't been to the event for many years, but I seem to recall this issue arose back then and a ban of some sort put on re camping at aircraft due to some idiots starting camp fires near their aircraft and sparks flying around and making others nervous.
Wasn’t there a fireworks incident at one point?
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