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VTOL news updates - Australia

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VTOL news updates - Australia

Old 30th Aug 2021, 02:03
  #121 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by gulliBell View Post
Those numbers sound whacky. To have an accident rate of 8.14/100,000 hours yet only a fatal rate of 0.68/100,000 hours simply doesn't make sense. I don't believe it.
qulliBell, would have to agree, either they've be incredibly lucky with a pile of accidents that haven't resulted in a fatality or there due for one hell of string of a fatal crashes. Hopefully someone will check the numbers to confirm them.
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Old 30th Aug 2021, 03:47
  #122 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Bksmithca View Post
qulliBell, would have to agree, either they've be incredibly lucky with a pile of accidents that haven't resulted in a fatality or there due for one hell of string of a fatal crashes. Hopefully someone will check the numbers to confirm them.
Good effort in calling for a check on these figures. The Australian fleet is very large on a global scale; due in part to the large number of light machines, many are privately owned. (High loss rate). These machines, due mustering, fly more hours than the rest of the register. Most low level rural accidents usually occur at a slower speed than that of heavier faster turbine helicopters. And the smaller machines appear to be more survivable as a general rule. All kinetic energy stuff - and a lot of solo accidents pushes up the rate/100,000 but exposes less bodies to fatal impact forces. Hope this helps.
I use international and local figures from trusted government sources., just to be careful.
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Old 30th Aug 2021, 05:21
  #123 (permalink)  
 
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robsrich
Not sure I'm willing to buy the line about it being smaller private machines that are crashing at low energy. Accident rate are broken down to account for the various sizes of fleets across the world and with a rate of 8.14 per 100,000 flying hours One might question the training and testing methods in Australia
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Old 30th Aug 2021, 07:12
  #124 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Bksmithca View Post
robsrich
Not sure I'm willing to buy the line about it being smaller private machines that are crashing at low energy. Accident rate are broken down to account for the various sizes of fleets across the world and with a rate of 8.14 per 100,000 flying hours One might question the training and testing methods in Australia
Agree it is hard to compare apples with oranges. Australian figures are somewhat different to CA and USA. A large number of mustering machines here are engaged in cattle/sheep herding on cattle/sheep ranches where the owner can buy his own helicopter and then muster livestock needing only a private license and some mustering training to fly on a commercial type activity as a private pilot over his property.

This causes a muddle - the private pilot is doing high risk flying on his own company property, and does not need to have a very complex safety system (if any?) Their accidents maybe overlooked during record keeping by the regulator. Thus a lot of losses are the result of low level relatively slow maneuvers chasing unhappy soon to be MacDonald's burgers.

Further to your comment on Australian training; the new regulations are coming into effect by early December, and we hope things will improve. Why? The insurance industry has said enough is enough, and are withdrawing from insuring machines in this part of the world! Or charging outlandish premiums.

Guess what - drones are making inroads in some areas - they are more readily accepted by the cattle and much cheaper to run - but we still need helicopters - these trends are interesting?
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Old 19th Sep 2021, 05:02
  #125 (permalink)  
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Tue 7 Sep ’21. Australia's Fuel problems continue – Senator Susan McDonald told by NT helicopter operators.

One of many issues raised by operators was the fuel problem with 100LL avgas which it was claimed is damaging cylinders of helicopters. A media report stated Paul Blore from Outback Helicopter Airwork recommended 100LL be removed from the market to prevent further damage to cylinders in piston engines.

Some operators have been able to source 100/130 fuel, which they say has alleviated the problem.

"Our recommendation is to go back to the original 100/130 fuel," he told the senators. "Since 2017, I've replaced 49 cylinders. For example, I bought a new aircraft not long ago, over $600,000 worth, and in the first 170 hours of I've had to replace three cylinders. All under 200 hours: that's less than 5% of the life of that aircraft engine.”

"And this is a common problem; we don't seem to get the life out of the engines with low-lead. Since I've changed over to the leaded fuel, it's cured the problem."

Blore found support from Warwick Curr of Alice Springs Helicopters. “I've been very fortunate," Curr said. "As soon as we received our first shipment of 100/130, we were able to get all of our clients onto the same fuel. I guess for a while I was the only person to be able to do that, and the results were immediate. We haven't had a cylinder failure since those first drums came into our possession.”

"Our recommendation is that 100LL should just be removed from the marketplace; it's not fit for use."

The senate inquiry is scheduled to hold several more public hearings between now and December when the final report is due to be tabled. The CEO of the Rotorcraft Asia-Pacific Business Association (RAPBA) has advised members a large amount of detailed technical information was recently provided - now undergoing a review. Hopefully this will be checked and published in coming editions of RAPBA’s Board Room Briefings.

RAPBA is seeking to help end this high risk airworthiness deficiency before a fatal accident occurs. This issue appears to have been examined by the AHIA and their excellent report was published in 2018. It looked back over years prior. (See website and Facebook). Almost five years ago!
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Old 19th Sep 2021, 12:23
  #126 (permalink)  
 
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Wow, that's just insane! Does not the Australian government set standards for 100LL? It would either appear not, or that any standards that may exist are not sufficiently strict.

From the 21 Oct 2019 AHIA report executive summary:

"Examining the history of avgas supply to aviation operators in the northern parts of Australia, it was evident that over recent years, manufacturers had reduced the absolute levels of tetraethyl lead (TEL) in the avgas product, from historical levels of around 0.75 gPb/l in 2012, to around 0.38 gPb/l in 2018. To maintain the fuel’s Motor Octane Number for defence against damaging detonative combustion, other fuel chemistry variations would be expected – typically an increase in the level of aromatic hydrocarbon components. Data to support explicit conclusions in this area was not available to this investigation, with the manufacturer citing commercial sensitivity concerns."

Will the Australian piston helicopter customer community be able to vote with their wallets, or are they just buying 100/130 from the same idiots who are taking liberties with the formulation of 100LL? Is 100/130 more expensive?
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Old 22nd Sep 2021, 03:54
  #127 (permalink)  
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Drones in Victoria must be working overtime?

Three days of anti-vax protests, followed by an earth quake. Endless TV news services re-transmitting incidents.

Media sources say Vic Police has around 50 drones. (NSW now has 100). After action reports will be helpful to our many drone (RPAS) operators.

Great effort by those on the frontline.
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Old 23rd Sep 2021, 08:10
  #128 (permalink)  
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https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/b...ries-jpf56j0lk

Bird attacks on drones force Google to suspend home deliveries

Ravens are attacking drones passing through their territory, forcing curtailment of a pioneering drone home delivery service in Australia’s capital.

Wing, run by Google’s overarching company Alphabet, has been operating drones in the skies above Canberra since 2019, flying meals, coffee, medicine, hardware and office supplies to the city’s northern residents — a forerunner for similar services globally.

Large ravens that appear to be enraged by the drones have engaged in sorties with the remote-controlled craft, nearly bringing down at least two flights in recent days. Wing has been forced to suspend flights to some areas of the city to prevent harm to the birds and its drones.

The ravens have learnt how to swoop on the drones, which are crisscrossing the skies of Canberra in greater numbers as demand for their service surges during the city’s coronavirus lockdown.

“It’s a matter of time before they bring one down,” said one resident, Ben Roberts, whose cup of coffee arrives at his home each morning slung beneath a drone. Roberts filmed the latest attack, and the video prompted Wing to suspend delivery to his suburb today while it ponders how to deal with the marauders.

On the first day of combat, Roberts told The Canberra Times, the birds appeared to have botched their drone attack, with flying feathers indicating that at least one had hit the propellers. By their third sortie the ravens had learnt how to avoid the drone blades. Roberts said there were flecks of what he thinks were paint in the air, indicating that the birds had made a hit.

The company first trialled its drone delivery service in Canberra three years ago, attracted by the city’s large parking lots and wide street edges, which offer plentiful landing sites.

It told affected customers: “We’ve identified some birds in your area demonstrating territorial behaviours and swooping at moving objects. While this is common during nesting season, we are committed to being strong stewards of the environment, and would like to have ornithological experts investigate this further to ensure we continue to have minimal impact on birdlife in our service locations.”

A Wing spokeswoman said in the tens of thousands of drone deliveries made in Canberra, contact with birds was extremely rare.

“In the unlikely event that a bird makes direct contact with our drone, we have multiple levels of redundancy built into our operations to ensure we can continue to fly safely,” she told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation……

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Old 23rd Sep 2021, 09:19
  #129 (permalink)  
 
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...one resident, Ben Roberts, whose cup of coffee arrives at his home each morning slung beneath a drone.....
Madness.......
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Old 7th Oct 2021, 19:44
  #130 (permalink)  
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Southern Hemisphere Fire Season Approaching? Message to our folks who maybe in the USA?

On 7 Oct 2021, HAI’s Jen Boyer was quoted as saying, “As the 2021 North American fire season winds down, the HAI Aerial Firefighting Safety Conference is now little more than a month away. Held in Boise, Idaho, on Nov. 16 and 17, the event will feature two keynote safety presentations in addition to legislative briefings from HAI and critical safety briefings and interagency updates from the US Forest Service and the US Department of the Interior.

With wildland firefighting seasons growing longer, hotter, and larger every year, aerial operators must remain one step ahead to ensure peak safety. A misstep or small change of events in the volatile fire environment can mean the difference between a job done safely and tragedy.

A safe firefighting operation, however, isn’t maintained on autopilot; it’s carefully planned, smartly executed, and judiciously reviewed for opportunities to improve. The presenters at this year’s conference will reveal steps operators can take to bring their approach to safety to the next level.

In the first keynote presentation, “Dealing with the Pressures of Complex Work Environments,” Chris Young of CY Consulting Solutions will take a close look at the internal and external pressures we put on ourselves as operators to do the job perfectly, on time, and on budget, and how that path can unwittingly set us up for failure. He’ll provide advice on how to manage our expectations and approach our jobs, customer relationships, and operations with a successful risk-mitigation mindset that protects lives, property, and reputations.

The second keynote speaker, Phoenix Heli-Flight CEO Paul Spring, will share his company’s successful experience with aircraft monitoring technology in his presentation, “Safety and Financial Benefits of Flight Data Monitoring.” His talk will include advice on how, when paired with a positive safety culture, flight data monitoring can significantly strengthen one’s safety precautions.

Through leader and employee buy-in, Spring has used FDM to protect staff and companies, productively review incidents, and quickly identify potential issues before they’ve led to trouble. During his presentation, he will explain how the technology has helped keep Phoenix Heli-Flight’s insurance premiums lower than the competition’s and paid for itself many times over.

Other presentations at the conference will address current legislative impacts on safety and the aerial firefighting community, and the use of uncrewed aircraft systems (UASs) in the aerial firefighting environment. The conference will be held at The Riverside Hotel and includes hosted meals and networking sessions. Attendance is free for HAI members and $95 for nonmembers. A discounted conference rate on rooms is available by calling + 1 208-343-1871 and identifying yourself as an attendee of the HAI Aerial Firefighting Safety.
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Old 26th Oct 2021, 08:38
  #131 (permalink)  
 
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Great to see Microflite has signed a deal for air taxis for Melbourne 2025. Lovely to see evolution and growth in the industry!
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Old 26th Oct 2021, 17:30
  #132 (permalink)  
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CASA's Annual Report 2020/2021

On schedule, the report was released on 21 October 2021.

Rotorcraft Asia-Pacific e-News has started sorting out changes from last years report in detail.

Also, looking at the 62 submissions provided to the Senate Inquiry on GA aviation being run by Senator Susan McDonald. They overlap in some areas.

A complimentary subscription to e-News and Board Room Briefings is available, to make sure we all paddle in the same direction as COVID is brought under more control.

Next edition we have a special article on a developing serious heavy helicopter problem. The MCC(H) appears to be stuck in a committee's bottom drawer. Really messes up getting an ATPL (H). You know the rest. No heavy helicopter captains.

Just send your email to rotorcraftnews (at) outlook (dot) com

Editor: Rob
PS: Your email address is kept very private.
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