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Unfriendliest airport for GA in Australia?

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Unfriendliest airport for GA in Australia?

Old 29th Apr 2022, 11:33
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by KRviator View Post
Warnervale has been PPR for yonks as well, despite also being owned by the Council. Their airport charges are astronomical too. When I was based on the Central Coast, it was cheaper to fly past Warnervale to Archerfield, do an hour of circuit training there, land, refuel, and fly back to the Coast than it was to fly 10NM and do an hour of circuits and refuel at Warnervale.
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Just to correct you on this. Warnervale (Central Coast Airport) is not PPR - refer ERSA. Yes, it is still owned by the Council.

After lobbying by the Aero Club and the local aviation community, the landing fees are more reasonable - although still prohibitive for circuits if you're an itinerant aircraft:


The Aero Club is run by friendly, approachable people who are most welcoming of visitors.
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Old 29th Apr 2022, 11:38
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by KRviator View Post
That's better than the Gold Coast. They require $35,000,000 US Dollars worth of "Aviation Hull, Third Party, Passenger, Cargo & Mail Liability and Premises Liability including War Third Party Liability" insurance.
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This has not been my experience flying in/around YBCG. Is this for aircraft under 5,700kg who are visiting? Where is this requirement published?
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Old 29th Apr 2022, 12:10
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by phlegm View Post
Moorabbin's landing fee for visiting GA aircraft is up to $65 or $70 now, which is ridiculous. Not to mention all the attempts to replace hangars with non-aviation related buildings.
This is honestly disgusting, how can they ask that much when hangarage fees/air services for users of the airport are already exorbitant
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Old 29th Apr 2022, 12:27
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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What is it with airport owners that makes them so special?
Because they have to deal with GA pilots?

Miles was very busy during the gas field construction boom. Every man and his dog was running there. F70's, Dash-8's etc. I think at one stage aircraft were routinely holding on the runway waiting for parking to become available. Not so much, if at all, now. I see on the satellite imagery there's only two spots on the NE end of the apron with GA sized tie downs. There appears to be no other parking. They probably haven't changed their ERSA entry from when they were busy. Perhaps they have no idea that their conditions of use are considered "onerous" because the people who go there abide by them. I mean, if you require prior notice, and everyone who goes there has sought it, what would make you thing that people don't like doing it? It's not like people would be calling them and telling them they're not going to visit because they don't want to give the required notice.
Dick, you are planning a flight. Therefore the requirement to give prior notice can surely be accommodated? So what's the problem? Give them a call, get permission, and then "drop in" as you are planning to. It's hardly killing the spontaneity if you were going to do it anyway.
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Old 29th Apr 2022, 15:17
  #25 (permalink)  

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I don't know the airports in question nor the ramp space available or the traffic loads. Perhaps there could be congestion and no way of resolving it if folks came in randomly?

There's several Greek Island airports that I fly to and ooh boy, if you don't let them know your planned arrival time (PPR) you won't be coming in. Reason? Comparatively small ramp for the jet traffic. The FBO etc doesn't have enough suitable tow bars (or a universal tug vehicle) to turn you around and if all the airline traffic is there, you don't have to space to turn around.

Of course, the airports mentioned above just might be operated by belligerent grumpy folk who don't realise what an airport is actually for.

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Old 29th Apr 2022, 20:57
  #26 (permalink)  
 
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I vote for Mildura, its run by Nazis. Wentworth is much nicer. Both strips are now sealed, the club has tea, coffee, frozen pies and a microwave and honesty box.
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Old 29th Apr 2022, 23:18
  #27 (permalink)  
 
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Because they have to deal with GA pilots.
And there we have it.

GA pilots are an inconvenience. That is the message sent. Pure and simple.

It may well be that everyone’s a nice bloke and PPR has never been refused, but having to ask for permission in the first place, and then having to pay a fee for the privilege, sends a message.

The airport operator’s preference, and the preference of many other airport operators, is that we just stay away. Then the inconvenience to them of having to “deal with GA” doesn’t arise. But I’d suggest that if you contacted the motels in the area, the pubs in the area and the tourist venues in the area, the preference would be different; especially if the ‘gas field construction boom’ is now bust.

It seems to me that YMLS was built/upgraded with only one thing in mind, and that’s not surprising in Australia, where narrow, short-sighted goals are the priority. But as I said earlier, if they’d just added a gravel taxiway off the runway to a gravel/grass parking area to the north of the apron, us GA nobodies would be little-to-no inconvenience. Or the gas field companies should have bought the lot and shut it off to all ‘outsiders’ except in emergencies. But ERSA says the operator is the regional council. It’s a council-provided public facility.

(A lot of hard work was done by a lot of people to restore Warnervale to some semblance of sanity. The sacking of the entire local Council helped.)

(Yes, Sunfish, methinks Wentworth has plans of attracting lots of activity away from Mildura. Unfortunately, Wentworth has started out with a usage fee, but it will eventually learn, as other councils have learnt, that it will cost more to collect the fees than the fees collected, and local businesses would prefer that council make landing and staying at Wentworth as attractive as practicable.)
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Old 29th Apr 2022, 23:51
  #28 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by MagnumPI View Post
This has not been my experience flying in/around YBCG. Is this for aircraft under 5,700kg who are visiting? Where is this requirement published?
Here’s what the Gold Coast Airport Conditions of Use say about insurance:
4.2 The Aircraft Operator

An Aircraft Operator must also comply with the following matters as amended from time to time:



4.2.4 GCAPL’s reasonable insurance policy requirements set out in Clause 14;

“Aircraft Operator” is defined to mean:

Aircraft Operator means the person whose name appears on the Aircraft Register as the operator of the Aircraft, the holder of the Certificate of Registration with respect to the Aircraft or any person who, with the authority of the holder of the Certificate of Registration for the Aircraft and the written acceptance of GCAPL, operates that Aircraft when it arrives at or departs from the Airport as the case may be;
The definition of “Aircraft” covers e.g. private aircraft:
Aircraft means and includes fixed wing Aircraft, helicopters, balloons powered or un-powered and their parts and accessories, equipment and stores;
And those “reasonable” insurance requirements are:

14. Insurances

14.1 The Aircraft Owner and Aircraft Operator’s insurances


The Aircraft Owner and Aircraft Operator must maintain with the appropriate insurers and on terms approved by TAPL (which approval may not be unreasonably withheld) in the Aircraft Owner and Aircraft Operator’s:

14.1.1 Aviation Hull, Third Party, Passenger, Cargo & Mail Liability and Premises Liability including War Third Party Liability (AVN52E) for any aircraft an amount of not less than:

10,000kg or less MTOW: US$25M

Exceeding 10,001 kg but not exceeding 28,000 kg MTOW: US$60M

Exceeding 28,000 kg but not exceeding 100,000 kg MTOW: US$200M

Exceeding 100,001 kg but not exceeding 170,000 kg MTOW: US$500M

Exceeding 170,001 kg MTOW: US$1.5B,

for any one occurrence but in respect of AVN52E any one occurrence and in the annual aggregate.

… all of which cover is put at risk by the “indemnities and releases” given by the Aircraft Owner and Aircraft Operator in clause 13.

(Insurance companies I’ve spoken to about these kinds of airport terms of use get a great laugh out of them as well.)

So KRviator might have been wrong in stating USD35 million. It looks like it’s ‘only’ USD25 million for aircraft 10,000kg MTOW or less. Or maybe there’s been a change, of which I’m not aware, to the Gold Coast Airport Conditions of Use.

But either way, it’s a joke. Might as well say USD1 frillion. Try getting cover that satisfies the stated requirements, for a light aircraft. And nobody at GC airport is enforcing the requirements anyway.
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Old 29th Apr 2022, 23:59
  #29 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by MagnumPI View Post
Just to correct you on this. Warnervale (Central Coast Airport) is not PPR - refer ERSA. Yes, it is still owned by the Council.
Fair enough, you're correct on this one. The last time I flew in there, it was PPR - I haven't bothered going back there since and so had not noticed that requirement was remove.. I'd rather give any landing fees to the owner of Somersby and land there than the CCC who managed to get themselves into over $500M debt through financial mismanagement - but that's another topic....Though you did leave off my favourite "Warnervale airport fee" $121.80 for "Refuelling on Council Land". NFI how they manage that one, but its' in CCC's schedule of fees and charges.
Originally Posted by MagnumPI
The Aero Club is run by friendly, approachable people who are most welcoming of visitors.
On this, I completely agree with you. I did my last AFR with the CCAC and apart from being shocked at how poorly the C150 performs compared to the RV, had nothing but pleasant interactions with all their staff.

Originally Posted by MagnumPI View Post
This has not been my experience flying in/around YBCG. Is this for aircraft under 5,700kg who are visiting? Where is this requirement published?
In the Gold Coast Airport Conditions of Use document, chapter 14. And its' for aircraft under 10,000kg, and if you are "a user" of the GC airport. Or Townsville, Mount Isa or Longreach too, apparently.

EDIT: I see LB has replied while I was typing this, but used $25M, that was the "old" rate from Jan 2020. The "New rate" from Jan 2022 is indeed, $35M USD.
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 00:19
  #30 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks for that update, KR: I shall be contacting my broker immediately, to increase my cover from USD25 milliion to USD35million! He does like a good laugh now and then.
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 01:07
  #31 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by KRviator View Post
Fair enough, you're correct on this one. The last time I flew in there, it was PPR - I haven't bothered going back there since and so had not noticed that requirement was remove.. I'd rather give any landing fees to the owner of Somersby and land there than the CCC who managed to get themselves into over $500M debt through financial mismanagement - but that's another topic....Though you did leave off my favourite "Warnervale airport fee" $121.80 for "Refuelling on Council Land". NFI how they manage that one, but its' in CCC's schedule of fees and charges.
On this, I completely agree with you. I did my last AFR with the CCAC and apart from being shocked at how poorly the C150 performs compared to the RV, had nothing but pleasant interactions with all their staff.

In the Gold Coast Airport Conditions of Use document, chapter 14. And its' for aircraft under 10,000kg, and if you are "a user" of the GC airport. Or Townsville, Mount Isa or Longreach too, apparently.

EDIT: I see LB has replied while I was typing this, but used $25M, that was the "old" rate from Jan 2020. The "New rate" from Jan 2022 is indeed, $35M USD.
Yeah the Council, pre-administration, had really lost the plot. Whilst that refuelling fee is in their schedule, in practical terms anyone filling up with Avgas from the bowser at Warnervale is filling on Club owned land so the charge doesn't apply.

That insurance requirement at YBCG is outrageous. Nearly certain when I've flown in there that the ACFT have not have that level of insurance, and the requirement doesn't appear in ERSA or on the fees and charges section of their website - how absurd that it is buried in chapter 14 of a ridiculous Conditions of Use document.
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 02:14
  #32 (permalink)  
 
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YBCG is not on its lonesome with those insurance requirements, though USD35 million for a bugsmasher or balloon is the highest I've seen so far.

But the most significant implication I see is that the people who come up with these requirements are cut off from a thing called 'reality'. If, in reality, the requirements were a reasonable mitigation mechanism for the actual risk, and if a corresponding insurance product were actually available to meet the requirements including cover for the indemnities and releases given by aircraft operators, the requirements would actually be enforced.

That's because insurance requirements are meaningless unless they are enforced by, for example, requiring production of certificates of currency of the required insurance before the airport is used. In the case of YBCG, one of the requirements is that the terms of the policy of insurance have to be approved by the airport operator first. So even assuming I can find a broker who won't collapse with laughter when I ask for USD35 million cover, I have to get them to send me the proposed terms of their insurance cover so I can send those to YBCG for approval. And what happens if YBCG objects to some of the terms and does not approve them? A couple of years of negotiation? At least that would give me time to sell some of my children's organs to come up with the premium.

If I do USD35 million damage to YBCG with my C152 and I don't have the insurance, who pays for the USD35million damage? I don't have USD35 million stashed in my mattress.

This disconnection from reality manifests itself in other behaviours of some aerodrome operators.

Last edited by Lead Balloon; 30th Apr 2022 at 02:25.
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 04:50
  #33 (permalink)  
 
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And the same insurance requirements apply at Longreach, Mount Isa and Townsville as apply at Gold Coast: Queensland Airports Limited Conditions of Use.

Yep: USD35 million minimum cover (the terms of which have to be approved by Queensland Airports Limited) for your 10,000KT or less MTOW aircraft to use Longreach, Mount Isa, Townsville or Gold Coast.

Planet Earth calling Queensland Airports Limited. This is Planet Earth calling Queensland Airports Limited. Do you read Planet Earth, Queensland Airports Limited?
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 05:46
  #34 (permalink)  
 
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I got bored this arvo, too wet to do any gardening and I didn't feel like taking the RV out for a bath in the passing showers so I found the following insurance requirements from relevant airport 'conditions of use' documents, all applicable for anything likely to be flown by your average weekend warrior. A lot of these documents also require you to note the relevant airport operator as having an interest in the policy too. The list is not exhaustive, I CBF'd going through every airport nationwide, but as a general guide it's eye-opening...

In descending order from those that made me snort my cuppa over the keyboard, we have:
  • LAUNCESTON (!) being the clear winner with $50,000,000 AUD (Though their definition of "Operator" in their CoU define it as "any airline that uses the facilities.....")
  • Gold (-plated??) Coast, Townsville, Mt Isa & Longreach all require: $35M USD
  • Sydney International: $25M USD
  • Alice Springs, Darwin & Ayres Rock: $30M AUD
  • Albury, Bankstown, Cairns, Camden, Canberra, Essendon, Hobart, Jandakot, Karratha, Mackay, Rocky & Port Hedland: $20M AUD
  • Moorabbin: $10M AUD
  • Archerfield & Parafield: NIL Required, so far as I could see!

$50,000,000 third-party to fly into Launy....$35M (USD, too!) to lob into Mt Isa for fuel enroute to Darwin in a 700Kg RV, or a sub-600Kg Jabiru? They've got rocks in their heads. But again "We may deny you use of the facilities...yadda yadda" if you fail to produce proof when asked. Given the vast majority of vehicular CTP policies only give you $20M third-party coverage it's got me stuffed how some airports think they need such extraordinary indemnities.

And that's before you even touch on any landing or parking fees at any of these places...

I found another lovely little tidbit in Cessnock's Operational Polict & User Guidelines
"All refuelling is to be done at fixed fuel facilities at the North-Eastern end of the airport. Aircraft are not permitted to refuel from drums, portable bowsers, or portable tanks"
. Guess that means no more taking jerry cans of Mogas to refuel the Tecnam there at the Flying Club hangars, you've gotta use the Avgas bowser, even if Rotax say Unleaded is the preferred fuel, too bad!
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 06:02
  #35 (permalink)  
 
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And, so far as I can tell, nil required for that not-so-sleepy hollow, Ballina.

One of the many amusing aspects of this is how these kinds of ridiculous insurance requirements can ‘backfire’ on the clever suits that come up with them.

Imagine that a negligent bugsmasher pilot collides with an RPT aircraft on the tarmac at one of these aerodromes with USD35 million cover required. Lots of personal injury, death and property damage done. Alas, old mate in the bugsmasher only had AUD5 million in cover, contrary the terms of use of the aerodrome (of which terms he wasn’t made aware). A lot of people are writing big cheques and bearing big pain and loss for stuff that isn’t their fault. Those people could sue old mate’s estate for the delta between AUD5 million and the actual damage, but old mate’s estate is worth 1 (Australian) cracker.

Who else to chase for money? Well let’s think about it. If QAL had enforced QAL’s own insurance requirements, old mate wouldn’t have been using the aerodrome in the first place unless he had the required cover. If QAL had done its job, either the accident wouldn’t have happened because old mate wouldn’t have been there, or there would have been complete cover to respond to old mate’s liability arising from the accident. QAL’s partly at fault! QAL has insurance and deep pockets – well, at least deeper than old mate’s estate. So…

As I said above, insurance requirements are meaningless unless those who impose them enforce them. And they can 'backfire'. Enforcing USD35 million for anything 10,000KG MTOW or less? Tell 'em they're dreamin'.
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 07:52
  #36 (permalink)  
 
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There is nothing in Cessnocks ERSA entry about self organised refueling. I any case, all they will notice if they looked at my aircraft during refuelling would be the whirring noise of a Bosch electric fuel pump and a gradually deflating twenty litre collapsible resting on the passenger seat.

Anyway, I have an ASIC :P
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 08:07
  #37 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Sunfish View Post
There is nothing in Cessnocks ERSA entry about self organised refueling. I any case, all they will notice if they looked at my aircraft during refuelling would be the whirring noise of a Bosch electric fuel pump and a gradually deflating twenty litre collapsible resting on the passenger seat.

Anyway, I have an ASIC :P
Don't need an ASIC at Cessnock, Sunfish but you DO need a hi-vis vest - though it doesn't need to be a reflective vest for night ops. Go figure...

But....where would such a vest-wearing 'operational' requirement be found, do you think? The EnRoute Supplement that all pilots should reference as part of their preflight planning, IAW the AIP? You'd think that'd be a good place for it. But no, it's certainly not in the ERSA. Nosiree, it's also buried in Cessnock's Operational Policy & User Guidelines. Because it's not as if pilots foreign to Cessnock will know to look there, or even that the damn policy exists...
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 09:39
  #38 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Capt Fathom View Post
This came up in the Birdsville thread…..
When planning to arrive in Miles for a pit stop with your caravan in tow, do you have to give 2 days notice?
What is it with airport owners that makes them so special?
Go to Goulburn; meet the owner there and it will take you a few seconds to get the answer!
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 09:46
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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Brilliantly written
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Old 30th Apr 2022, 10:54
  #40 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Head..er..wind View Post
Go to Goulburn; meet the owner there and it will take you a few seconds to get the answer!
Can you give the answer now? It will save me a trip!
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