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VTOL news updates - Australia

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VTOL news updates - Australia

Old 13th Apr 2020, 01:59
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WARNING! Another virus crisis is about to hit Australia!

African Swine Fever confirmed in PNG!

3 Apr ’20. African Swine Fever (ASF) was been detected for the first time in Papua New Guinea, bringing the disease to within a few hundred kilometres of Australia’s coastline.

In late February the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation reported a pig die-off of unknown origin had occurred in PNG’s Southern Highlands which had killed more than 300 pigs.

PNG’s Agriculture Minister John Simon has now confirmed the cause was ASF, after samples were sent to Australia for testing. ASF has now been detected in the provinces of Southern Highlands, Enga and Hela according to media sources. PNG’s National Agriculture and Quarantine Inspection Authority (NAQIA) said containment measures are now underway to stop its spread to other provinces and the coast.

In addition to the impact this will have on PNG’s own pork industry, it also means the disease is now on Australia’s doorstep.

The shortest border distance between the PNG's latest ASF case and Australia is about 150 kilometres; however, the northernmost Australian inhabited island, Boigu Island (in Qld), is about
5 kilometres from Papua New Guinea.

Australia’s Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud said with the spread of ASF to our neighbours Timor-Leste, Indonesia and now Papua New Guinea, our biosecurity is more critical than ever. “With the confirmation of ASF in our near neighbour, our biosecurity measures are more important than ever. “We offer our assistance to PNG as they work to contain this disease.

“Biosecurity measures in place in the Torres Strait have been ramped up as a result of COVID-19 and are being re-assessed to ensure they effectively manage the serios risk that ASF in PNG poses to Australia. “We cannot take biosecurity for granted. It protects jobs, farms, and food and it supports the economy. We need everyone to do their part and comply with these conditions when travelling here. “The Australian government has a no-nonsense approach to biosecurity non-compliance because we know how important it is to keep pests and diseases like ASF off our shores.”

Biosecurity vigilance essential. Australian Pork Ltd CEO Margo Andrae said the detection of ASF in PNG reinforced the importance of the ongoing ASF mitigation work between the pork industry, government and other stakeholders.

“While ASF does not pose human health risks, the deadly virus would absolutely devastate Australia’s pork industry if it arrived here.”

“The potential national economic impact from an ASF incursion in Australia is estimated to be more than $2 billion,” Ms Andrae said. “There is
no cure for ASF, and millions of Australian pigs would be at risk if the disease reached our country. That would devastate pork producers and Australian fresh pork supplies and seriously jeopardise the wellbeing of the 36,000 Australians employed in our industry.”

Ms Andrae said ASF represented potentially the biggest animal disease event the world has ever seen, having already killed hundreds of millions of pigs across Asia and Europe.

“ASF is now confirmed in PNG, Indonesia and Timor Leste and we’re concerned about its potential spread to the Pacific region. This battle is being fought across international borders and we welcome the Federal Government’s offer this week to assist PNG to contain the virus,” Ms Andrae said.

“Even with current travel restrictions, there’s no room for complacency in terms of ASF, especially given international postal services remain operational. That’s why the installation of two new 3D x-ray machines at the Sydney and Melbourne mail centres, as part of the Federal Government’s $66.6 million ASF-response package, is such an important part of our defence.

“Biosecurity measures in the Torres Strait have been strengthened as a result of COVID-19 and the Government is further reviewing those measures to reflect the risk ASF in PNG poses to Australia.” Confirmation of ASF in PNG coincides with the Inspector-General of Biosecurity’s release last week of the updated report on the adequacy of preventative border measures to mitigate the risk of ASF.

“A timely recommendation in the report is the inclusion of additional criteria in risk assessment for flights from ASF-affected countries, including a focus on seasonal farm workers,” Ms Andrae said. “We can’t afford any weak links in our defence against ASF. All aspects of monitoring at the border are critical, but so is the work by producers to strengthen on-farm biosecurity and the cross-agency collaboration being led by National Feral Pig Management Coordinator, Dr Heather Channon.”

Next – we look at possible roles for the helicopter and drone industries.


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Old 15th Apr 2020, 20:54
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Will cruise ship losses in 2020 boost the Australian helicopter industry?

Source: VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific – March 2020 Report.

Pre-coronavirus – good news for cruise lines. In June 2019, the Australian Cruise Association predicted 30 million passengers would be carried globally by end of 2019. Due to the industry growing at 5-7% orders have been placed for another 122 ships to be rolled out by 2027.

In fact, 24 new cruise ships were launched during 2019.

It was estimated in 2027, 38 million passengers will have travelled on 434 ships. The global industry revenue will be USD$134 billion of which Australia’s share will be USD$6.7 billion (AUD$11.1 billion) or 5% of the global market. Looking back on 2019, prior to the COVID-19 coronavirus, the Australian Cruise industry may have carried an estimated 5% of the 30 million passengers, or 1.5 million and earned around AUD$8.7 billion in revenue. That is a lot of money!

Post-coronavirus – good news for helicopter industry. Unfortunately, the cruise ship industry suffered an incalculable amount of extremely adverse publicity due to the handling of their coronavirus issues. The evening television has been full of bad news, ships being stuck at sea due to being banned from sending passengers ashore. And of course, Australian taxpayers had to partly fund the enormous rescue activities to bring stranded Australians back home.

Because of this disastrous episode around the world, it must be assumed cruise companies will suffer greatly and have extremely low bookings over the coming five years or so.

But maybe there is a more positive outlook for Aussie (and Kiwi) operators to consider?

More soon in coming posts.
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Old 26th Apr 2020, 19:52
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Thoughts on Australian post COVID-19 recovery opportunities

Further to our previous posts on this topic and on a more positive note, if only a small percentage of the would-be cruise ship customers decided to stay in Australia and go to our tourist attractions we would possibly be creating an enormous new industry segment for the rotorcraft operators. The tourist attractions are often located in very remote areas. Perhaps, this may be a chance for helicopter operators to participate in tourist activities with clients who previously would spend a lot of money on overseas air/sea voyages and onshore sightseeing.

Australian retirees who traditionally head out in caravans and motorhomes to visit Australian attractions, proudly call themselves the “Grey Nomads.” This group is well known for being very frugal – and not doing aerial scenic flights.

However, the “refugees” from the cruise ship industry are somewhat different as they are used to spending a lot of money on the typical 1 to 2-week cruise. If forced to stay in Australia, due to the post global coronavirus pandemic, they may add a potential new market for the light helicopter industry.

At present, Australia with 2,300+ helicopters, is predominantly a light helicopter fleet. In fact, the Robinson Helicopter Company provides more than half of this number. At a guess, around one third of the Robinson fleet can be found with mustering companies in remote areas; and by therefore would be able to provide typical tourist activities creating a new industry segment.

In summary, this yet to emerge client group, being somewhat wealthier, would probably use regional airline services and aeroplane charter companies to visit remote tourist attractions by air rather than driving past distances by road. And then go on a helicopter tour of the local attractions.

At present we must hope our regional airline services do not collapse!

The helicopter industry really needs to form a professional business association which focuses on technical and legislative matters that need to be resolved to ensure the promotion of this new tourist opportunity occurs. Naturally, this means linking up with various state and territory government and industry tourist associations to ensure the promotion of the new concept can be a team effort.

As an aside, at present, many Australian state and territory governments are offering incentives to create new industries to overcome the rising unemployment rate. But nobody is going forward to research and then negotiate government sponsorship which may be available to help start new industries as we move into the "new different normal" way of living in Australia.

One side effect of this possible change, is the aeromedical industry would not be able to cope with large increases in tourist operations in Australia. COVID-19 studies are showing how vulnerable we are in our more remote areas. An expansion of this medical facility, already under some stress, is necessary as the bulk of the tourist industry are a retirees and obviously create increased workload upon regional medical facilities.

Next post will show what the tourism financial figures are showing. We really are sitting on a gold mine, we should ask ourselves is the helicopter industry asleep at the wheel. By comparison, the UAV folks are creating amazing technology driven by folks with vision and prepared to think outside the square.

Are you inside or outside the square?

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Old 17th May 2020, 10:19
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Latest CASA regulatory reform processes strike opposition from rotorcraft industry

As Australians see one global crisis slowly receding leaving a damaged VTOL industry, it is now alleged by some, another crisis has emerged due to the misunderstandings about the latest regulations being offered by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

Despite the best of intentions by our safety regulator, the industry is suggesting the addition of another level of complex regulation may prove be more harmful than the COVID-19 pandemic. The proposed new rules are:
Part 138 Manual of Standards.

But industry is gathering forces to oppose the Part 138 MOS, especially after CASA’s own Technical Working Group (TWG) rejected the establishment of yet another layer of complex legislation.

However, CASA has opened consultations on the new rules for aerial work operations.


Feedback due 3 Feb 2020.

Urgent: See CASA website and express your point of view.
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Old 17th May 2020, 10:21
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CASA’s proposed Part 138 MOS – More on ABC News.

Heli-mustering industry raises safety concerns. Hear NT Country Hour with Matt Brann from ABC Radio News

https://www.abc.net.au/radio/program...ustry/12220426

Matt said the heli-mustering industry in northern Australia has raised concerns about proposed changes to aerial work rules. The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) is proposing a new Manual of Standards for Aerial Work Operations covering helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft, designed to address safety risks.

But several pilots have told ABC Rural they believe the changes would lower safety standards and could encourage rouge pilots to operate outside the rules.

Matt spoke with aviation industry veteran Mary Brown, from North Queensland Aviation Services, who said there could be some far-reaching consequences if the proposed rules are enforced. (Interview duration: 13 min, Wed 6 May 2020, 1:00 pm.)

Mary also said there are around 122 pages of other complex regulations that must be cross-checked with the proposed MOS. Industry is also alarmed at the very short timeline to complete this work when most of the operators are absent from their bases as the mustering operations probably are reaching their peak.

New rules suggest not allowing the carrying of passengers on charter flights, such as tourist scenic flights. These will not be allowed in the new MOS. These essential revenue sources for small commercial operators will be moved up into Air Transport Legislation to meet some airline type protocols needing new manuals, etc. And upgrading of the operator’s Aerial Operator’s Certificate will be required.

A comprehensive update will be provided in the
VTOL Asia-Pacific e-news May Report sent out on Monday 1 June 2020. Will include CEO of CASA’s reply to Mary after her request for a time extension. The CEO has suggested industry comply with their request to submit comments by 3 June 2020. After they have been sorted and published; then the industry and regulator would be able to sit down and commence negotiations over matters needed to be resolved in the best interests of the helicopter community.

Readers should note, there are equivalent regulations concerning aeroplane operations, include crop spraying for both rotorcraft and aeroplanes.

More soon on this important topic.

Reminder: Get your thoughts to CASA via the online service. See website. We must get this right as we try to rebuild our industry damaged by the COVICD-19 pandemic.
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Old 17th May 2020, 10:22
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Another point of view on Australian tourist flights.

Good news in disguise? For helicopter tourist operators in Australia.

Some interesting comments from a social media source in relation to flying on an airline when undertaking a future holiday after the coronavirus pandemic.

Comment 1. There are two things that I need to know before I'll pay for a ticket again; firstly, if my flight is cancelled then will I get my money back within a reasonable timeframe (not credits, no six month delays etc);and secondly, will my travel insurance cover any costs (including flights) if there is a flare up of Covid-19 that means that my travel has to be cancelled. Unless these happen then I won't be travelling until I'm certain that either case is highly unlikely.

Comment 2. A very good point James. I had two visitors from UK stay with me in February. Just before they were due to go home Emirates stopped all flights to Adelaide. They had to pay $5000 just to get home on Qatar via Perth in the end. To my knowledge they are still waiting for any reimbursement for Emirates and of course the Qatar ticket can't be claimed against the travel insurance as it due to a pandemic.

So, who going to risk a repeat of that in a hurry? Not me. I was going to return the visit later this year before all this blew up. No way now. Will be at least 18 months before I even look at it.

My next holiday will be driving somewhere like up the centre of Australia to Darwin.

These comments are very timely as this sounds like an opportunity for the large number of small helicopter operators in remote areas of Australia. Although, their main business is supporting the mustering industry and other aerial work activities of a similar nature; tourism, is claimed, scenic flights keeps them in business – a bit like the straw that broke the camel’s back saying?

But will this change if the proposed Part 138 MOS is introduced whereby the small companies cannot continue their scenic flights until they move up into the legislative nightmare required by the upgrade to the Air Transport legislation.

What are your thoughts?
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Old 2nd Jun 2020, 04:13
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Alphabet's drone delivery service Wing has made 'thousands' of deliveries in Australia.

Wing is a subsidiary of Google’s parent company Alphabet and launched in Canberra in 2019. Many people have been using the service over the past few months as the coronavirus pandemic continues. Wing found the use of its service has risen 500% between February and April, in Australia. “We saw the number of deliveries double from February to March, then again from March to April, including thousands of deliveries in Australia,” said Maria Catanzariti Wing Communications Lead.

Wing has delivery sites in Canberra, Logan, Queensland, Virginia in the USA, and Helsinki in Finland. And has received around 350% increase month on month in sign-ups to its service around the world. In Australia, Wing delivers items from 24 businesses – 16 in Canberra and 8 in Logan. These include retailers such as Wokitup! Kickstart Expresso and Sushi Hub. in Canberra it works across the suburbs of Crace, Palmerston, Harrison, and Franklin in the Gungahlin community. While in South East Queensland, it operates across the suburbs of Crestmead and Marsden in Logan.

Some of the most popular items delivered by drone include coffee, fresh bread, and household groceries like milk, eggs, and toilet paper – as well as hot roast chickens and sushi.

How does it work? Deliveries are made via the Wing app. Once you place an order, a drone picks up the package at Wing’s delivery facility then – at its flight altitude – it heads to its destination. Once it gets to the destination, the drone slows down, hovers, and drops to seven meters above the ground. It then lowers the package to the ground by a tether and releases it in the selected delivery area – usually a front yard or back yard. The drone does not land and there is no need for you to unclip it or help with the delivery. When it is done, it just goes back to its cruise height and returns to Wing’s site.

The drones have a wingspan of 1 metre, weigh roughly 4.8 kg and can carry packages of around 1.5 kg. They can reach speeds of up to 113 km/h (60 knots) and their fastest delivery time to date has been 2 mins and 47 seconds.


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Old 6th Jun 2020, 19:16
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The Titanic has finally hit the iceberg!

The Australian helicopter industry has been generally locked down with the COVID disaster; and CASA, in good faith, have asked for a review of two substantial legislative packages; Firstly, the Part 6 MOS aerial work operations, recently closed a week ago; secondly, another layer of legislation now being offered above all existing legislation known as the CATS regulatory suite; issued for comment on 2 Jun with replies by 30 June 2020.

The obvious problem is that industry is generally locked down with enormous COVID restrictions, and many companies are probably in hibernation with staff stood down. In particular, the largest group of operators are in the rural mustering industry and they are presently approaching the peak of the mustering season.

This means their staff are deployed in extremely remote areas away from base and of course unable to respond to the request for comments in a matter of weeks. For example, the MOS runs to 132 pages, according to media sources. The CATS is an overview or concept, but extremely complicated – this is an understatement! (About ten cups of coffee to process the magnitude of this proposed monumental regulatory reform process.


So, what is the answer? Perhaps we should turn to the various associations, including those involved in both flying operations and aircraft maintenance. Some are currently accepted by the regulator as advisers, and perhaps they could be asked to jointly work through the issues

I respectfully ask that meaningful comments are passed on this thread, so that we do not end up having an argument such as where the "deckchairs should be placed on the deck of the Titanic."

Best of luck, with this project; you advice is needed, I am a poor swimmer and the life boats are full!!

Your help is needed, any ideas?

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Old 7th Jun 2020, 01:33
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By way of explanation for previous post.

Background: PPRuNe readers should note the Australian Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) is replacing the older Civil Aviation Regulations (CAR) with the new Civil Aviation Safety Regulations (CASR). Many of the new regulations are supported by relevant standards are published in a Manual of Standards (MOS) document.

Problem: Specific transitional rules are required to change from the existing rules to the new rules governing flight operations commencing in December 2021. These transitional rules are formally referred to as the consequential, application, transitional and savings or ‘CATS’ regulations.

An industry observer’s comment: CASA have released another consultation, even before Part 138 MOS consultation had closed! We need to look closely at details of this one, as it includes another layer called CATS regulations! Here is why CASA believe we need it:

The effective implementation of the Flight Operations CASR Parts, both from an operational perspective and a legal perspective, requires the making of CATS regulations. In general terms, CATS regulations would address:

- What current CARs need to be repealed, because their provisions are replaced by the new CASRs and MOSs or because they are no longer needed for other reasons.

- What remaining CARs need to be amended, because the terminology and the definitions they rely on, or other regulatory provisions that they cross-refer to, will no longer be current.

- What current CASRs need to be amended, because the terminology and definitions they rely on, or other regulatory provisions they cross-refer to will no longer be current.

- What actions taken and will which authorisations, approvals, exemptions, and other instruments made under the CARs need to be “saved” i.e. continued in effect for a period of time.

- What transitional provisions are required otherwise to enable the orderly and effective transmission of aircraft operators from the flight operation of requirements contained in the CARs and CAOs to the requirements of the new Flight Operations CASR parts.

Hope this clarifies the situation of concern with the Australian Regulatory Reform process, which continues to ask for industry feedback with too short deadlines. Unfortunately, the ongoing and well-meant process is being hampered by the coronavirus restrictions which has effectively shut down many smaller companies many of whom have entered hibernation or worse still ceased trading. That is one of the reasons of concern, apart for the need for so many changes in the interest of safety.

For the above reason, individuals and companies are encouraged to submit feedback by due date to the published CASA website facility; even if your statement would simply say, “unable to comment due to short timeframe and restrictions imposed by COVID-19 restrictions.”

Closing date is 30 June 2020

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Old 15th Jun 2020, 09:29
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Update: Helicopter industry concerned about new Part 138 MOS and CASA's new CATS requirements

Since March 2020, the Australian helicopter industry has been generally locked down with the COVID disaster; and CASA, in good faith, have asked for a review of two substantial legislative packages; firstly, the CASR Part 138 MOS - aerial work operations which closed for comment early in June. Secondly, another layer of even more complex legislation has been offered for review. The proposed rules are known as the “CATS regulations,” issued for comment on 2 June with replies due by 30 June 2020.

CASA has provided guidance material for the CATS review which runs to 28 pages; however, the time allowed for completion is effectively four weeks. Please see guidance material at:

https://consultation.casa.gov.au/reg...P%201918OS.PDF

Industry’s complaints are two-fold; the CASR Part 138 MOS runs to 130+ pages and the CATS documentation requiring cross referencing would be, at a guess, several hundred pages depending on the nature of a company’s AOC. The immediate problem is industry is generally locked down with enormous COVID restrictions, and many companies are probably in hibernation with staff stood down. In particular, the largest group of operators are in the rural mustering industry and they are presently approaching the peak of the mustering season. This means their staff are deployed in extremely remote areas away from base and of course unable to respond to the request for comments in a matter of weeks.

So, what is the answer? Many helicopter pilots and companies got together online to work out what can be done with the two projects which they are duty-bound to complete by the due dates. Mary Brown representing several hundred industry key players, contacted Shane Carmody, CEO and Director of Aviation Safety to discuss the Part 138 MOS review. It was agreed the due date would not be changed; however, industry was encouraged to submit some form of reply so the future handling of this project could be evaluated after all the feedback had been studied. In hindsight, all parties agreed this was a sensible solution; although, there is insufficient time to provide a detailed analysis.

However, during the review process of the MOS, the CATS legislation was launched and has proved to be an even more complex project than the MOSS, which had not been approved by the regulators technical working group as it was too complex and difficult to understand. (Despite the fact CASA had offered to produce plain English explanations of what the new rules meant).

More soon ......

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Old 15th Jun 2020, 10:40
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Originally Posted by robsrich View Post
Update: Helicopter industry concerned about new Part 138 MOS and CASA's new CATS requirements

Since March 2020, the Australian helicopter industry has been generally locked down with the COVID disaster; and CASA, in good faith, have asked for a review of two substantial legislative packages; firstly, the CASR Part 138 MOS - aerial work operations which closed for comment early in June. Secondly, another layer of even more complex legislation has been offered for review. The proposed rules are known as the “CATS regulations,” issued for comment on 2 June with replies due by 30 June 2020.

CASA has provided guidance material for the CATS review which runs to 28 pages; however, the time allowed for completion is effectively four weeks. Please see guidance material at:

https://consultation.casa.gov.au/reg...P%201918OS.PDF

Industry’s complaints are two-fold; the CASR Part 138 MOS runs to 130+ pages and the CATS documentation requiring cross referencing would be, at a guess, several hundred pages depending on the nature of a company’s AOC. The immediate problem is industry is generally locked down with enormous COVID restrictions, and many companies are probably in hibernation with staff stood down. In particular, the largest group of operators are in the rural mustering industry and they are presently approaching the peak of the mustering season. This means their staff are deployed in extremely remote areas away from base and of course unable to respond to the request for comments in a matter of weeks.

So, what is the answer? Many helicopter pilots and companies got together online to work out what can be done with the two projects which they are duty-bound to complete by the due dates. Mary Brown representing several hundred industry key players, contacted Shane Carmody, CEO and Director of Aviation Safety to discuss the Part 138 MOS review. It was agreed the due date would not be changed; however, industry was encouraged to submit some form of reply so the future handling of this project could be evaluated after all the feedback had been studied. In hindsight, all parties agreed this was a sensible solution; although, there is insufficient time to provide a detailed analysis.

However, during the review process of the MOS, the CATS legislation was launched and has proved to be an even more complex project than the MOSS, which had not been approved by the regulators technical working group as it was too complex and difficult to understand. (Despite the fact CASA had offered to produce plain English explanations of what the new rules meant).

More soon ......

About bloody time that CASA was disbanded and replaced with a reulgator that understands that it works for the industry and NOT the other way around. CASA regs are overly complex at best and bewildering at worst. There are far more simple regulations in other agencies worldwide that are no less safe. I deliberately exclude anything in Europe or the UK in that statement!
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Old 17th Jun 2020, 00:06
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The COVID-19 pandemic is coming under control in Australia and New Zealand.

Due to enormous efforts by the leaders in both countries and the mobilisation of enormous medical support we have finally reached a turning point which can be best described as moving towards the light at the end of the tunnel. Both nations have really tried hard to control and manage the coronavirus, and thankfully, due to the tremendous efforts by our emergency services workers we have arrived at the end of the tunnel and can now move out and cautiously start the recover recovery phase.

But how do we do start the recovery actions?

It is extremely hard to plan a recovery strategy when we do not have access to all the facts about our current to situation. In this post, I can report I have looked at comments from a number of people who have produced reports or commenced new business activities. Maybe we can learn from their experiences in overcoming the current global pandemic.

Thanks to CASA for a review of Australia’s current situation and industry feedback. The Special Feature by Robert Wilson, from CASA’s flagship Aviation Safety Magazine titled, ‘An ill wind: COVID-19 and Aviation’ has a detailed and in-depth report on the overall aviation industry. As we focus on helicopters and drones, we must accept of the aviation industry is related in many ways, so bad news in one area usually affects those in another. At present tourism, state borders and government regulatory reform issues are matters of intense interest. Thank you, Robert.

Full copy available from robsrich (at) bigpond (.) com. Just ask. Good stuff both RW and and FW.
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Old 17th Jun 2020, 10:58
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Good news for flying schools and students in 2020.

In April 2019, Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack announced from January 2020, the amount those studying aviation can borrow under the vocational education and training (VET) student loans scheme will be increased from $104,440 to $150,000. An industry review in 2018 had shown the previous loan limit was not enough to provide aeroplane student pilots with all the licences and ratings required. It was recommended the increased limit would allow more students to obtain the Flight Instructor Rating as well as either the Agriculture Rating for students wanting to stay in general aviation or the Multi Crew Cooperation course for those wanting to continue to the airlines.

At present, the helicopter industry is seeking advice on how this new funding will apply helicopter students. Due to the more expensive flying rates, a VFR single engine commercial license will probably cost around $95,000. Advanced training for IFR and multiengine helicopter training is very expensive. Further, the situation is further complicated by the fact only a few flying schools can provide the advanced training. This situation is being reviewed by several government agencies, such as TAFE Queensland. More soon.

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Old 5th Jul 2020, 06:23
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IT’S OPEN SEASON

Great escape tourism will surges as Qld borders opens on 10 July 2020

Queensland is set for a tourism boom; following news the border will open on 10 Jul ’20, sparking an extraordinary surge in holiday bookings. Online searches for holidays are up 70% since the announcement. Cairns has the most enquiries for flights.

Our readers would have noted over the last three months we have focused on the relationship between the tourist industry and the Australian general aviation industry. In brief, various tourist agencies have published reports which have shown an enormous amount of money is spent by Australians on overseas recreational travel.

Now that international travel will be disrupted for at least 3 to 5 years, Australian tourists will be restricted to enjoying their holidays within Australia. Tourist agencies suggest this will be a boost for the regional airlines and of course other tourist activities involving general aviation.

During the current winter months, Queensland traditionally hosts enormous numbers of interstate visitors from colder regions of Australia. At present, the Queensland helicopter industry currently leads the other states as shown by the CASA Aircraft Register.


Queensland has 763 helicopters, next is New South Wales with 534, Victoria is third with 331; Western Australia follows with 290, Northern Territory - 190; South Australia – 79; Tasmania - 50 and ACT – 11.

Let us hope the numbers will increase over the next year or so, as suggested by tourist agencies!
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Old 5th Jul 2020, 08:13
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Australian tourists will be restricted to enjoying their holidays within Australia.
So Australians cannot travel abroad?
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Old 5th Jul 2020, 09:56
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Same again;
Very complicated at present; but it seems Australians need to be careful and check which option is available on a particular day.
But most interesting was comment by very senior airline executive who said even he would not travel as he thought it was impossible to get travel insurance.
Madness to travel without travel insurance, especially, if you get sick from something else, and get stuck in a crowed medical centre with COVID-19 patients.
Appreciate your comment, made me check again. Keeps us on our toes?
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Old 10th Jul 2020, 16:51
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CEO of Australia’s aviation regulator announces his retirement

Source Australian Flying Magazine – 8 July 2020.

Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) CEO and Director of Aviation Safety (DAS) Shane Carmody will leave the regulator at the end of 2020. CASA Chairman Tony Mathews confirmed on 8 July 2020, that Carmody would retire four years after he was appointed to the role. "The Board is very pleased with what Mr Carmody has achieved during his time as CEO/DAS, particularly the resolution of CASA’s long-standing Regulatory Reform Program and much improved stakeholder confidence in CASA as a safety regulator," Mathews said. "This Board is confident that CASA is on a firm footing for the future. "To allow time for a replacement to be found, Mr Carmody will remain as CEO/DAS until the end of the year."

Carmody was appointed to the role as Acting DAS in October 2016 after the sudden departure of Mark Skidmore. He was confirmed in the role permanently in June the following year. Carmody is a career public servant and has had a long career in public service including in defence security intelligence, veterans’ affairs and a three-year stint as CASA Deputy DAS to Bruce Byron in 2006-9. During his time as DAS, Carmody oversaw the end of the epic aviation safety regulation reform program, the implementation of the Basic Class 2 medical and the establishment of the Aviation Safety Advisory Panel (ASAP).

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Old 13th Jul 2020, 01:30
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Location: Australia
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Australian CASA has two new Board Members – Source CASA website.

Ms Elizabeth Hallett GAICD – Appointed 1 July 2020

Elizabeth is an experienced non-executive director and chair of audit & risk committees in regulated sectors, including the financial services and infrastructure sectors. She is a non-executive director on the boards of Sunsuper, a large public offer superannuation fund, NPP Australia Limited (which is responsible for the New Payments Platform), and NSW Land Registry Services. Elizabeth is a reappointed member of the Australian Takeovers Panel and sits on the Advisory Committee of the John Sample Group. Elizabeth was formerly a corporate partner with an international law firm for 22 years, where she held global and national leadership roles. Elizabeth brings legal and regulatory, corporate governance, risk management and strategy development skills and experience to the board. Elizabeth holds a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Melbourne, and is a Graduate of the AICD Company Directors’ Course.

Ms Marilyn Andre – Appointed 1 July 2020

Marilyn has an aviation career spanning over 25 years. Her career in aviation included flying the BA Jetstream 41, Airbus A319/A340 and Boeing 747 and expanded into holding governance, leadership and education positions associated with the industry. Marilyn has held senior leadership and advisory positions with a range of aviation entities including Boeing Training and Professional Services Australia, Boeing Australia Holdings, the Australian Air Force Cadets National Council and Women in Aviation (Australia). In addition to extensive operational and governance experience, Marilyn has consulted for several Australian flight training providers on aviation syllabi. She has a particular interest in the possible integration of virtual and augmented reality to enhance flight training outcomes. Marilyn is a sessional lecturer with the School of Engineering and Built Environment, Griffith Aviation at Griffith University in Queensland and is finalising a doctorate with the Australian Graduate School of Leadership at Torrens University.

Published CASA Board contact is via CASA Board Secretariat: [email protected]'

PS: Maybe we should look to engage with incoming new DAS/CEO and the CASA Board; maybe through associations such as the AHIA, AMBOBA, AAUF, AAAA to mention a few. Also, CAA NZ has undergone a setback with the resignation of their CEO due political turbulence and industry interaction seems slowed. The HAI is a model of making the best of adversity and working more as a team; rather than being supercharged lemmings wearing blindfolds and rushing to the nearest cliff?
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Old 26th Jul 2020, 10:59
  #59 (permalink)  
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Update on free rotorcraft news service

Australian based VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific is now Rotorcraft Asia-Pacific.

The Singapore airshow reports indicated Australia and New Zealand we were deeply involved within south-east Asia, which includes India, China, Japan and around 50 other nations including Australia and New Zealand. The reports indicated there were around 6,200 helicopters in the region, of this number Australia and New Zealand had around 3,200 helicopters registered. Or a little over 50% of the Asia-Pacific region, which has more than half of the global population – and at a guess probably 60%+ of the world’s GDP.

Researchers suggest the 51 nations have a strong growth in their middle-class population allowing for increases in aviation industries.


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Old 27th Jul 2020, 21:55
  #60 (permalink)  
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Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority seeks new CEO/DAS

Just a heads up, due closing date approaching on Sunday 23 August 2020.

The CEO/DAS, duties include the need to represent and advocate Australia’s civil aviation safety program in a complex, dynamic, and politically sensitive environment. New CEO must provide clear policy direction, lead transformational change, manage risks, and strengthen relationships with the aviation community, government, and the Australian public.

Access to the information pack is shown on the CASA website.

The outgoing CEO/DAS has stated he has completed the regulatory reform process which will become effective over the next few years. Unfortunately, the helicopter industry probably had to make more changes than their aeroplane cousins within the general aviation industry.

To his credit, CASA provided enormous support during the recent catastrophic bushfires; and then the ongoing coronavirus pandemic which also required a large number of concessions, permissions, and extensions of many a workforce licences and permits, etc.

The incoming CEO/DAS will have an enormous task to relook at lessons learnt during the bushfire season, and drastic changes required within the aviation industry during the worsening pandemic. Now severe financial hardships are being experienced within the airline community, and to a lesser extent in the general aviation helicopter industry.
However, both segments are really struggling.

The rotorcraft industry will have to be prepared to step forward and help the no doubt stressed regulator when we push hard to establish a vast number of UAS operations and other autonomous vehicles operating within Australian cities. Integration of the UAM within the controlled airway system will be an enormous effort by both the owners and operators of the new technology and the government regulators who have to make enormous changes in the way our skies may look in the future.

We are living in an age of rapid change;
Darwin would be not aware his theory of evolutional has gone into the hypersonic mode!

As Prime Minister Scott Morrison tells us from time to time, we are all in this together, he is demanding red tape be slashed; and this includes our industry which needs to try and make the best of our unknown future opportunities when they arise. But we must be able to help ourselves and help others who have the responsibility of regulating safety and hopefully the sustainability factor.

What do you think? (Be positive).
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