Senate Estimates - 2017-18.
CASA Hansard is out:  Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee(Senate-Friday, 27 October 2017)

This Hansard segment IMO is one of the most interesting to come out Senate Estimates for a long time. I have already quoted certain parts on the Drone Wars thread but in light of the CASA/ATSB/ (Hood & Carmody) continued embuggerance of Dom James, I would like to draw attention to the following quoted Hansard:-    

Barry O on investigative standards & administrative due process... Wink :
Quote:CHAIR: I get the resource thing. I get that. I know what's required in terms of resources to investigate matters. If I were a drone operator out there and decided I was going to flout the rules—this debate's not going to go away. In the last 24 hours, we've had drugs dropped into a prison. It's like living through a self-fulfilling prophecy about what's happening around this space. I wouldn't be concerned about you mob. I would think: 'There have been these other incidents. They didn't pursue them with any energy. If they're not going to go after them, they're definitely not going to come after me.' This is a problem. If you've got a resource issue that you say impedes your ability to direct people to do a thorough investigation about breaches of the law around the use of drones, my advice is you should start making the argument to government that you need more resources, not say, 'We're not going to do it because we're not equipped to do it.'

Mr Carmody : I understand your point, thank you. My only response is that the allocation of resources for investigations of drones or any other matter depends a great deal on the seriousness of the matter.

CHAIR: That takes up the matter of Senator Sterle. It's my background, to some extent. We investigate matters and we prosecute people, where possible, for breaches of any law—drones or anything else—and we do that for a purpose. It's to inhibit this behaviour in the first instance. If we have to wait until the person is murdered before we dispatch a team of detectives around to have a look at it—there are similarities here. If you know that people are breaching the law, but we wait for some catastrophic aspect to it before we dedicate a body of resources, that's not a deterrent for people to behave in a lawful manner, in my view.

Dr Aleck : I understand your view. We did not wait. We did investigate. We issued. We came up with a penalty.

CHAIR: We'll wait to see the matters come back on notice, but I have to tell you, an interview—and I don't know who the others were. Dr Aleck's investigator would be one of the few people in the room who wouldn't know who was at the rugby match or who goes to these matches. It's well known. It's well publicised. You can Google it. The same people go and run around that flat every time. This young man who operated the drone knows everyone in this place—I promise you. I'm interested in what he said when your investigator quite properly said to him: 'Who else was present? What are the names and identities of the other people that you don't know about?'

Dr Aleck : We took on notice whether that question was asked. I said that, in my view—

CHAIR: Of course. I've got to tell you, if your investigator didn't ask it, you want to get him or her down into the car park and get them out of your business as quickly as you can. That would have to be the most fundamental question.

Dr Aleck : I would say that the questions that were asked of the individual were not answered in a particularly fulsome manner—and there's no obligation for anyone to do so. I'm not justifying that, but it's a reality.

CHAIR: You're telling me now that you have at least advice that the individual did not cooperate with your investigators in a full and wholesome manner.

Dr Aleck : I would say that the individual did not respond fulsomely and, to that extent, was not as cooperative as we would like to have been.

CHAIR: Were these interviews recorded?

Dr Aleck : Not to my knowledge, no.

CHAIR: You're telling me someone started an investigation and interviewed an individual, at least with a view to a prosecution, and didn't record it to the standard that would be required to underpin that prosecution? Are there no notes, no contemporaneous record of the conversation, no recording taped, no video or otherwise? Is that what you're telling us?

Dr Aleck : I will only say that the maximum consequence of such an event was an infringement notice. I'm not aware of matters of that kind.

CHAIR: That is not the burden of my question. Are you telling this committee that your investigator, confronted with a witness or a potential offender, who you say wasn't totally cooperative, did not record in any shape or form the interview that took place?

Dr Aleck : I said I don't believe so, but I'll confirm that.

Senator STERLE: Is the investigator in the room?

Dr Aleck : No.

CHAIR: I'll tell you what we'll do—are they in Canberra?

Mr Carmody : To clarify, if I may, I thought the question might not have been clear for Dr Aleck. When you said, 'Record in any way, shape or form,' I'm not certain whether there was a voice recording, but there was an investigative report. There will be notes. There is an investigation.

CHAIR: That's different from the evidence. I'll tell you what we're going to do. When my colleagues have finished with you, why don't you have tea and bikkies in the other room, reach out and come back to give us a more fulsome answer of you records? I don't want to just take this on notice, because this has taken a direction of its own. I'd like you to come back and, if there's any possibility in this modern world that they can transmit those notes taken at the time or get any other recording into your hands, we'll look forward to listening to it and examining it further
MTF?- Definitely...P2 Cool
Reply
Nick's final Estimates & tabled docs - Wink

Via the Senate RRAT Committee:

Quote:Tabled documents

Senator Xenophon

Standard Form Recommendation regarding licence 27 October 2017

PDF 2,043KB

Quote:[Image: Wodger-1.jpg]

P2 - Naughty Wodger didn't fill out the time it took him to bodgy up the dodgy, Hoody unsigned, SFR - Rolleyes



Senator Xenophon

Civil Aviation Safety Authority correspondence regarding licence conditions 27 October 2017

PDF 1,508KB

Quote:[Image: DJ-MC-corro-1.jpg]
[Image: DJ-MC-corro-2.jpg]
[Image: DJ-MC-corro-3.jpg]
 
Not exactly sure why they bothered putting the black texta through the names etc. NX has already spilled the beans on Malcolm and Fred...
Quote:Senator XENOPHON: Okay, but it seems, on the face of it, that it is having a bearing on the decisions made by CASA given that there was an email from Malcolm Campbell on 6 October 2017 to Fred van der Heide.

Or here at 09:35 -



  
...plus the docs were released under the FOI so technically they are available to anyone un-redacted if requested - or not... Wink  ( see here: Vol 1 & Vol 2)


MTF...P2 Tongue
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Senate & RRAT Committee news: 17 Nov '17 

First of all on the 15 November Rex Patrick, former adviser to NX, was sworn in as a Senator of the State of SA to replace NX himself... Wink

Quote:Chamber Senate on 15/11/2017

Item PARLIAMENTARY REPRESENTATION
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PARLIAMENTARY REPRESENTATION

South Australia

The PRESIDENT (09:31): I have received, through the Governor-General, from the Governor of South Australia a copy of the certificate of the choice by the houses of parliament of South Australia of Rex Patrick to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Senator Xenophon. I table the document.

Senators Sworn

Senator Rex Patrick made and subscribed the oath of allegiance.
  
Not wanting moss to grow under his feet I note that Senator Patrick wasted no time getting signed up to the RRAT committee as a 'Participating Member':
Quote:COMMITTEES

Membership
The ACTING DEPUTY PRESIDENT ( Senator Ketter ) (17:57): The President has received letters requesting changes in the membership of committees.
[Image: e4t.jpg] Senator FIERRAVANTI-WELLS (New South Wales—Minister for International Development and the Pacific) (17:57): by leave—I move:

That senators be discharged from and appointed to committees as follows:...

...Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation and References Committees—

Appointed—Participating member: Senator Patrick

& the next day... Wink

Quote:Senator Patrick to move on the next day of sitting:

That the Senate—
notes that:

the Australian Information Commissioner Act 2010 (AIC Act) establishes three independent statutory office holders:
the Information Commissioner,
the Freedom of Information (FOI) Commissioner, and
the Privacy Commissioner,
subsections 11(5)(a) and (b) and subsections 12(5)(a) and (b) of the AIC Act describe the independence of each Commissioner,
in the six months following the Royal Assent to the AIC Act, three commissioners were appointed to the three office holder’s positions,
since the unsuccessful attempt by the Abbott Government to abolish the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, two commissioners have left office and have not been replaced,
currently Mr Timothy Pilgrim fills the statutory position of the Information Commissioner and Privacy Commissioner, and the position of FOI Commissioner is vacant on account of Mr Pilgrim not holding the legal qualifications required in section 14 of the AIC Act, and
the AIC Act requires the appointment of three independent statutory office holders, and the Government is constitutionally bound to maintain and execute the laws of the land and uphold the will of the Parliament; and
calls on the Government to immediately commence the process of appointing an independent Privacy Commissioner and an independent FOI Commissioner, in accordance with the AIC Act. ( general business notice of motion no. 590 )
It will be interesting to see if Senator Patrick carries the same passionate concern as Nx on matters of aviation safety by continuing the probing scrutiny of the governments aviation safety 3 stooges... Huh
While on the RRAT I note that it is going to be a busy 4 months for both the Senate  Standing Legislative and Reference's committees, especially in the month of March 2018 :
Quote:Airports Amendment Bill 2016 [Provisions]
On 9 February 2017, the Senate moved that the following matters be referred to the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee for inquiry and report by 28 March 2017. On 28 March 2017, the Senate granted an extension of time for reporting to 19 March 2018

Airports Amendment Bill 2016 [Provisions]

Regulatory requirements that impact on the safe use of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems, Unmanned Aerial Systems and associated systems.

[Image: drones.jpg]References Committee inquiry into remotely piloted aircraft systems visit to Dalby, Queensland

On 13 October 2016, the Senate moved that the following matters be referred to the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee for inquiry and report by 27 April 2017. On 16 February 2017, the Senate granted an extension of time for reporting until 6 December 2017. On 16 November 2017, the Senate granted an extension of time for reporting until 28 March 2017.

The operation, regulation and funding of air route service delivery to rural, regional and remote communities

On 16 November 2017, the Senate moved that the following matters be referred to the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee for inquiry and report by 30 March 2018.

Submissions should be received by 5 February 2018.


MTF...P2 Tongue
Reply
Supp Estimates QON index etc.

Via the Oz Senate Wink :

Quote:Infrastructure and Regional Development portfolio

Questions on Notice Index

Download the index (PDF 610KB)

Senator Xenophon

Standard Form Recommendation regarding licence

27 October 2017

PDF 2,043KB


Senator Xenophon

Civil Aviation Safety Authority correspondence regarding licence conditions

27 October 2017

PDF 1,508KB


MTF...P2 Tongue
Reply
Senator Patrick on keeping the bastards honest - Rolleyes

In NXT Senator Patrick's first speech yesterday, I was encouraged to see that Senator Rex has picked up the Xenophon mantle on transparency and accountability of the Government and it's agencies:

Quote:..I think legislating is something the Senate does quite well. However, there is another constitutional function that the Senate is not fulfilling, in my view, as well as it does in legislating. In this I refer to the Senate's role of probing and checking the administration of laws, of keeping itself and the public informed and of its requirement to insist on ministerial accountability for the government's administration. With words so relevant to us that it is quoted in Odgers, US President Woodrow Wilson described the informing role of the congress, stating:

It is the proper duty of a representative body to look diligently into every affair of government and to talk much about what it sees. It is meant to be the eyes and the voice, and to embody the wisdom and will of its constituents. Unless Congress have and use every means of acquainting itself with the acts and the disposition of the administrative agents of the government, the country must be helpless to learn how it is being served …

The philosopher John Stewart Mill, quoted with approval in the High Court case of Egan and Willis, summarised the task as:

… to watch and control the government: to throw the light of publicity on its acts …

Applied to the Senate, these principles make it clear that our role is not just to review and pass legislation. Indeed, as President Wilson stated, 'The informing function of Congress should be preferred even to its legislative function.' In the House of Representatives the government has the majority, usually, and so that function is not performed there. Governments can never be relied on to supervise and scrutinise themselves. The Senate must take this role most seriously. The Constitution, particularly section 49, grants the Senate power to carry out this informing function.

The Senate can conduct an inquiry of ministers through questioning and can compel the attendance of witnesses and the giving of evidence, and require the production of documents. Yet, despite having these powers, the Senate has often been reluctant to use them. It sometimes appears to be satisfied with explanations that are untimely and/or unsatisfactory. I provide you some examples.

Questions on notice tabled in this chamber are often not returned within the 30 days required by the standing orders. The same is true for estimates, where answers to questions are often returned to committees at the eleventh hour. This is disrespectful of the Senate, and more so of the citizens for whom the questions are asked, and should not be permitted if we are seen to be taking our job seriously.

All too often, orders for the production of documents have been met with contempt. An order for the production gets made. The government advances an argument for public interest immunity, however tenuous that argument might be. Invariably the Senate does not accept the public interest immunity claim and the government insists on its refusal to provide the document, and then the Senate does nothing except weaken itself. In those cases where the Senate arguments are strong for the documents to be produced, the Senate weakens itself by not using its powers to insist on production.

Also, the Senate has been shy about calling junior officials to estimates and to references committees. Fellow Senators, the devil is often in the detail, and senior officials, officers of summary knowledge, simply don't know the details. The Senate should not hesitate to call a witness of any rank or experience if that witness has the information the Senate deems necessary for informing itself. I've seen departments resist the calling of junior witnesses and, more recently, declining a request for senior officials on a naval shipbuilding advisory board to appear before a committee. This is from Odgers:

In practice, it is rare for a committee to order the attendance of a witness because it is rare for anyone to refuse a committee’s invitation to give evidence.

Colleagues, of course we should not exercise power irresponsibly, but by the same token we must also recognise that there are circumstances when it is also irresponsible not to exercise a power.

Finally, I've seen departments refuse to give evidence for shallow reasons. Last month, Defence refused to discuss whether the use of Australian steel was a requirement in an armoured vehicle. Let us be clear: we don't have to accept denial, obfuscation or spin from executive government and its servants. To do so is copping out, selling out or wimping out of the oaths that we have taken. It's time we stood up for ourselves and used the numbers we normally use so effectively in enhancing legislation to enhance this critical oversight role.

In that vein, I wish to raise an important oversight deficiency of the federal parliament, that the federal parliament wants for fixing. Just over a year ago the Prime Minister announced an independent review of Australia's intelligence services. The review was released in June and included a number of recommendations that recognised—noting that 7,000 people and 10 agencies are involved, and more than $2 billion of taxpayers' money is being spent on intelligence—that more coordination was required in the intel domain. Whilst I strongly support our intelligence services, we must also recognise that the power that comes with such organisations must be appropriately balanced with enhanced accountability.

The Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security is currently constrained to oversight of administrative and financial matters. The parliament, in contrast to the principles of responsible government, has carved out operational matters from the purview of the committee, and that is neither wise nor acceptable. For the avoidance of doubt, the intelligence service does a lot of first-class work and critically important work. Parliamentary oversight does not constrain an agency operating lawfully; rather, it seeks to enhance an agency's operations.

This has long been recognised in the US, where committees such as the House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence can delve deeply into agency operations. This is accepted by the US intelligence community as necessary and appropriate. It should be the same here, and I propose to introduce a private senator's bill to this effect.

Joseph Pulitzer once said:

There is not a crime, there is not a dodge, there is not a trick, there is not a swindle, there is not a vice which does not live by secrecy.

Open and transparent government is critical in a system of responsible government. However, the effective use of the Senate's informing and oversight powers must also be augmented by strong and effective laws that ensure the fullest degree of transparency and accountability of government. Freedom of information laws, strong whistleblower protections and enhancing the powers of ombudsmen and auditors-general will ensure more accountability. Why does this matter? If the Senate does its job to the fullest extent possible, if we have institutions to ensure transparency and accountability, the taxpayers' money will be spent more wisely and more effectively, which is clearly in the interest of all Australians...

Or in pictures:






MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
Supplementary Estimates AQON update - Dodgy  

Courtesy the RRAT committee Secretariat... Wink

Quote:Subject: Supp Estimates QON due date?
 
Dear Estimates Officer,
 
Would just like to inquire to when the Supplementary Estimates QON are
due as it doesn't appear to be listed on the RRAT Estimates webpage?
 
Also are the AQON, in particular the CASA AQON, going to be published
before or early into the New Year?
 
Thank you in advance,
 
Kind regards,
 
P2.

Dear P2,
 
Thank you for your email. Answers to QONs for the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport committee were due on 15 December 2017. We will update the web page to reflect this shortly.
 
We received and published a number of answers on Friday, however we have not yet been sent all the answers. If these are received before this Friday, they will be published this week, otherwise they will be published early in January.
 
Please do not hesitate to contact me with any further questions.
 
Kind regards,

Dear Ms Ulcoq,

Thank you for your prompt reply. Can I confirm from the AQON supplied so far (ref: https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Bus...mates/rrat) that there is no answers from:

a) CASA;
b) Airservices Australia;
c) Aviation & Airports division;

Or is it that the answers are yet to be forwarded from the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Transport?

Regards,

P2.

Hi P2,
 
We have yet to receive any answers from CASA, Airservices Australia or Aviation and Airports Division, however I believe the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development are hoping to supply us with the remaining answers early this week.
 
Please do not hesitate to contact me with any further questions.
 
Kind regards,
MTF (hopefully with the AQON)...P2 Cool
Reply
Comardy Capers - A year in review? Dodgy  

From this year's 1st SBG: The future - In the rear view mirror.

Quote:...At last NY’s day :-SBG #1 - .1/.1./.17. -" for example the Australian aviation industry, where, clearly, it is to everyone’s advantage to make things ‘better’. Did that happen in 2016? Of course not. Could it have happened in 2016? It bloody well should have – alas. Australian aviation enters the new year still burdened by the same troubles; the same unresolved issues, the same deft deflection of meaningful reform, the same denial that there are serious problems. Mind you, as the industry shrinks, real reform and good management become of less concern to the people who not only created the aberration, but have the power to fix it". Amazing...

It is rare thing for me to re read any of my scribblings; but I sat here and looked at the first SBG for 2017. Drones still feature high on the ‘to-do’ list; although the Senate Committee seem to be getting a handle on the matter – albeit at a snails pace; but, the consensus is that they at least will produce an outcome. Their inquiry has at least publicly highlighted the CASA attitude and lack of imagination; many believe their lack of competence has been exposed throughout the inquiry.

In fact, when you start to add up the lacklustre CASA performance on just about any subject mentioned at Estimates, you have to start wondering about cost v benefit...

With the departure before year's end of 6D AGAD, somewhat by default the 'lacklustre' and disappointing year of 2017 will now be recorded on the Carmody legacy register. Therefore I thought it worth reviewing the performance and achievements of DAS Carmody to this point in time and what better place to start than reviewing CC's performance in Senate Estimates... Rolleyes

To begin who could forget, under questioning from Sterlo at Budget Estimates (23/5/17), when Carmody tried to water down the fact that CASA had not even written the ToR for the drone review that the minister had requested CASA conduct some 8 months before:





While on drones what about the flippant Carmody attitude and 'up yours' insult under questioning from Chair Barry O... Huh





Then there was the 'vague', non-committal, obfuscated response by CC, when under questioning by NX on the subject of oversight of airport safety, in relation to the tragic Essendon airport accident (Add Estimates 27/02/17):





And from Supp Estimates who could forget the arrogance and disdain displayed by Carmody when NX (in his final Estimates) was questioning him on matters in relation to the DJ CASA embuggerance:




 
To wrap up the Carmody performance under Senate Estimates scrutiny, here is the list of outstanding QON that have now passed the due date to be answered (i.e. another blatant display of 'up yours' to the Senators):      
    
Quote:Question on notice no. 112

Portfolio question number: 461

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Janet Rice: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 23 October 2017—
What is the status of the flight crew fatigue rules, under CAO 48.1, currently?
1. Have the anticipated changes been delayed? If so, for how long, and why?
2. When is it anticipated that these fatigue rules will be in place?

Question on notice no. 113

Portfolio question number: 436

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Glenn Sterle: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017


ACTING CHAIR: You are inconsistent you being CASA. Let's talk about the fellow
who flew the drone down to Bunnings to pick up the sausage. What fine did he get?
Mr Carmody: I don't know. One of my colleagues would know. Senator GALLACHER: $3,000, wasn't it?
ACTING CHAIR: Let's get it out. I'd ask it to be on the record so every Australian can hear it: as long as you are a pilot and it's the firsttime, you're going to get away with it. Ready kids? All the kids are going to get the drones for this Christmas. There are rules that say you can't do this, but it depends on
who you are. There seems to be one rule for one and rules for others. I'm waiting for
whoever you can bring up, Mr Carmody, because I really want to know why a pilot
can fly a drone over Parliament House and then just get a tap on the toenail. But let's
hear what happened to the gentleman who flew his drone down to Bunnings to pick
up a sausage. Mr Carmody: I haven't got the details. I'm waiting for one of my colleagues, who I hope will have the details of the offence. We'll have to dig it up...

Mr Carmody: Dr Aleck will have some details about penalties. Dr Aleck: I regret to
say that I don't have these identified by the Bunnings event. Senator STERLE: Do
you want me to google it? Dr Aleck: I recall I will confirm this that that matter did
invite an infringement notice. Senator GALLACHER: $3,000 is what was reported.
Dr Aleck: Whatever the penalty was, if that was the case. Senator GALLACHER:
He put it on Facebook that his drone went down, picked up a sausage, came back.
You looked at that and fined him $3,000. Dr Aleck: I believe that was the case, and
I'm not doubting it. I'll confirm it.


Question on notice no. 114

Portfolio question number: 437

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Barry O'Sullivan: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

CHAIR: I hope you don't mind me interjecting. I wasn't even going to buy into this I
was half asleep here when this started. Do you mind if I return to a line of questioning
of Dr Aleck? So far you've indicated that you identified one person and you reflected
on the inability to identify others because you weren't aware of their identity. So the
one person you spoke to was a member of parliament. Let me ask you, Dr Aleck:

surely, question 101 from your investigator would be to the member of parliament,
'Who else was here?' and I assume the member of parliament ought to be able to tell
you, with about 80 or 90 per cent accuracy, how many people were here and who they
were. My question is very specific: did your investigator ask the individual, the
member of parliament who you're about to identify, who else was present and how
many there were? Dr Aleck: If our investigator had the opportunity to speak with
them CHAIR: If you don't know the answer, Dr Aleck, say, 'I do not know the
answer.' Dr Aleck: I do not know the answer, but I can assure you that the question

CHAIR: No, there's no need for you to editorialise. I ask you to take on notice, with
your investigator, whether they asked the member of parliament about who was there
and how many there were. But you're about to identify the member of parliament who
was interviewed. Dr Aleck: The member of parliament whose office was contacted
was Michelle Landry and, as I explained, our efforts to interview Ms Landry were
unsuccessful at this point. CHAIR: So we're dealing in months here. How many
efforts have been made to engage with Ms Landry over the months? Dr Aleck: I'll
take that on notice, but Ms Landry was identified only relatively recently. We had
misidentified her as somebody else in the frame and that was corrected.


Question on notice no. 115

Portfolio question number: 438

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Glenn Sterle: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017


Senator STERLE: I'll make a statement here, rather than a question. You ping any
other Australian for breaking these rules, and you don't think we're going to come
back here and say, 'Here we go again'? You cannot be serious. You are the enforcers.
You are the ones who lay down the rules. You are so blinded because politicians or
political employees can get away with murder around your rules defend that. Mr

Carmody: I'm happy to provide on notice lists of where we've provided counselling
letters for similar offences. I didn't realise that, from what Senator Gallacher said, you
were after a higher standard. I thought you were after the same standard. We're very
happy to provide on notice where we've issued counselling letters as well, if that
would help. Senator STERLE: Have you had to counsel any pilots for breaking your
rules for usage of drones? Mr Carmody: I'd have to take it on notice. We've
counselled a number of people. As I said, it depends on the circumstance. We've fined
a number of people, and it depends on the circumstance.


Question on notice no. 116

Portfolio question number: 439

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Barry O'Sullivan: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

CHAIR: I'm not done. If you'd like some names, Dr Aleck: the Deputy Prime
Minister, Senator Canavan, Mr Perrett, Mr McCormack and Mr Buchholz were there,
and I'll have some more for you in the fullness of time. My question to you is did your
investigators even interview the operator of the drone? Dr Aleck: Yes. CHAIR: Did
they ask him who else was present or what numbers were present? Dr Aleck: I'll take
that question on notice. I assume they conducted a normal investigation, which would
have involved questions of that.


Question on notice no. 117

Portfolio question number: 440

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Barry O'Sullivan: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

CHAIR: You're telling me someone started an investigation and interviewed an
individual, at least with a view to a prosecution, and didn't record it to the standard
that would be required to underpin that prosecution? Are there no notes, no
contemporaneous record of the conversation, no recording taped, no video or
otherwise? Is that what you're telling us? Dr Aleck: I will only say that the maximum
consequence of such an event was an infringement notice. I'm not aware of matters of
that kind. CHAIR: That is not the burden of my question. Are you telling this
committee that your investigator, confronted with a witness or a potential offender,
who you say wasn't totally cooperative, did not record in any shape or form the
interview that took place? Dr Aleck: I said I don't believe so, but I'll confirm that.



Question on notice no. 119

Portfolio question number: 442

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

Senator XENOPHON: It is a sensitive issue. The standard form recommendation, as
I understand it, is a document relating to adding references to a flight crew licence
condition. Is that right? Mr Carmody: In reality it's a recommendation that might
have many functions. It's a way of combining information to a decision-maker like
me, a recommendation for us to take a particular course of action. So it might not be
licensing; it could be anything. Senator XENOPHON: Sure, but the normal course is
that for the document to be a valid document, it ought to be a signed document is that
right? Mr Carmody: Yes, that would be reasonable. Senator XENOPHON: That's
in terms of the appropriateness. My understanding is that a recommendation was
made, but it was not signed off. In other words, are you satisfied, and you may want
to take this on notice, that the standard form recommendation that I have referred you
to is appropriately executed so as to be a valid document? Mr Carmody: I'd have to
take it on notice. I haven't got the document. I don't know the date of the document.

Senator XENOPHON: I'm happy for you to take that on notice, but I've got concerns
as to the validity of the document in relation to that. This document relates to Mr
James having to take a proficiency check prior to being able to act as a pilot in
command of a multicrew aircraft. I've provided you with a copy of that. It's a form
signed by Mr Roger Chambers, but my understanding is that it is not properly
endorsed. Are you able to confirm that, or do you need to take that on notice? Mr

Carmody: I'll take that on notice.



Question on notice no. 120

Portfolio question number: 443

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

Senator XENOPHON: So there's a question there: is the standard form
recommendation incomplete? I asked you to take that on notice. If it is in some way
incomplete or deficient, that may have some bearing on the decision-making process
of CASA. It's a technical question, but could you take that on notice? Mr Carmody:

I'll take it on notice, but if it's a current standard form recommendation, then, as I said
before, that's why I'd like to review it. The standard form recommendation that I
assume underpins the original decision probably has not changed. Anyway, I'll take it
on notice and have a look at it.


Question on notice no. 121

Portfolio question number: 444

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

Senator XENOPHON: I'll put this in general terms. There's an issue of process that
I'm concerned about. The names of the individuals aren't so key to this. Who was
authorised to see the draft report, as to the processes involved for that? Can you take
that on notice? Mr Carmody: Certainly. Senator XENOPHON: Were there any
individuals who weren't authorised to see the report who did see the report? Mr

Carmody: I'll take both of those on notice. The draft report is provided to us to
provide comment on, and you would expect my inspectorate those who are involved
in the matter to be reviewing that report and providing comment


Question on notice no. 122

Portfolio question number: 445

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

Senator XENOPHON: Does that relate to documents such as standard form
recommendations or not? Dr Aleck: I think under the FOI legislation there are some
limitations about what goes on there. But anything that we're required to post publicly
will be on there. Senator XENOPHON: So there's no question that these documents
that weren't posted publicly should have been posted publicly? Can you take that into
account? Dr Aleck: If they were within the category of documents that ought to have
been identified then I Senator XENOPHON: If you could take that on notice.

Dr [b]Aleck: I will, yes.[/b]


Question on notice no. 123

Portfolio question number: 446

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

Senator XENOPHON: It's good to clarify that. I'm almost finished. The Senate
inquiry some time ago found that there were a number of points of fault in the Pel-Air
incident. It's clear there are a number of impositions on Mr James. Can CASA advise
what other officials or what other entities by title, not name have had a remedial
action placed on them in terms of whether there were multiple points of fault leading
to this incident? Mr Carmody: Sorry, Senator, can I just clarify that. Are you talking
specifically about the Pel-Air incident? Senator XENOPHON: Yes, I am. Mr

Carmody: And whether we have placed restrictions on anyone else? Senator

XENOPHON: Yes. Mr Carmody: I can take it on notice, but I understand the only
restriction that was placed would be a restriction placed on the pilot in command, at
this stage. I don't believe any other restrictions have been placed on the first officer,
but I can check. Senator XENOPHON: And not on management issues with Pel-Air
and their systems? Mr Carmody: I don't know whether that leads to any restrictions,
but I'll take that on notice. Senator XENOPHON: And, on notice, there are issues of
air traffic control and weather forecasting, so, if not restrictions, were there
recommendations made in relation to improvements of that? Mr Carmody: Certainly
I'm aware that a number of changes or improvements were made post that accident,
but I can provide those responses on notice. I think they've been provided before, but
I'm quite happy to provide them. Senator XENOPHON: Okay. On notice, after the
release of the report, can you advise the committee of every person who was
identified as contributing to the accident directly or indirectly and any action that
CASA has taken in respect of those persons. That is something that can be done after
the ATSB report. Mr Carmody: We will have to wait for the ATSB report, but
certainly.


Question on notice no. 124

Portfolio question number: 447

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and

Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Glenn Sterle: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017


Senator STERLE: Mr Carmody, I know you are just going to have a read of that, but
I want to be very, very precise here. Dr Aleck, I'm going to ask you, in terms of your
investigation and interviewing of Mr Ashby, did your investigators ask Mr Ashby if
he sought approval to fly the drone over Parliament House from any government
agency, department or bodysecurity agency? Dr Aleck: I will take your question on
notice as to whether he was asked if he had asked permission, but what we do have in
the material in fact that's before me now is that we inquired of the AFP and of the
organiser of the event, and no permission was sought of those Senator STERLE: I
will come back a couple of steps. Can you tell this committee: did your investigators
ask Mr Ashby or did Mr Ashby offer advice or answer your investigators' questions
that he sought approval from the AFP to fly the drone? Dr Aleck: That information I
haven't looked all through this yet, but I can't answer that question at the moment. I'm
not aware of that, but I haven't looked thoroughly at the materials. Senator STERLE:

How long would it take you to get that information? Dr Aleck: Whether our
investigator asked Mr Ashby that question? Senator STERLE: Whether Mr Ashby
offered an answer to your investigators that he sought approval to fly the drone over
Parliament House on that day from the AFP? Dr Aleck: It shouldn't take long.

Senator STERLE: Thank you. I'll wait for that answer.

Come on CC, how hard is it to provide the AQON to those questions? FDS!

In the words of the Heff... Dodgy



  

MTF...P2 Cool

Ps On the subject of Carmody's hypocritical duplicity, I note that the enforcement manual is yet to be amended (last amended 17 Jan 2016) and still contains the moniker of former Sociopath DAS McCormick: Director's preface - Dodgy
Reply
CASA AQON - so far... Rolleyes

Helen, from the RRAT committee Secretariat, replied today to my request for an update on the progress of the Supp Estimates AQON:

Quote:Dear P2,
 
Happy New Year. We received a number of responses to QONs for CASA, Airservices Australia and the Aviation and Airports division prior to Christmas but after our Secretariat had shut down. I will be publishing these later today. Please note, we are still awaiting some answers to these questions.
 
Kind regards,

Helen

 Okay so the following is the AQON (for CASA) received and processed so far... Wink

The first AQON is in reply (see above) to Barry O's QON No. 114:
Quote:Answer
• On 29 September 2017, an email was sent to Ms Landry’s office, seeking confirmation that it was her in video footage obtained by CASA of this event and whether she recalled the operation of the drone and could indicate what she believed to be the distance between her and the drone Mr Ashby was operating.

• On 11 October 2017, having had no response to his email, the CASA Investigator contacted Ms Landry’s office by telephone, at which time he was advised by an office staff member that it was not Ms Landry in the video, but rather, the staff member believed the individual to be the Hon Jane Prentice MP.

• On 11 October 2017, an email was sent to Ms Prentice’s office seeking confirmation that it was her in the video footage and putting the same questions to her as were put to Ms Landry.

• On 13 October 2017, having received no response to his email of 11 October 2017, the CASA Investigator contacted Ms Prentice’s office by telephone. A member of Ms Prentice’s staff advised the Investigator that Ms Prentice was unavailable to speak with him at the time, but that she would respond to his inquiries.

• On 18 October 2017, in the absence of any further response, the CASA Investigator again contacted Ms Prentice’s office by telephone. On this occasion, he spoke with Ms Prentice’s office manager, who advised the CASA Investigator that his email message had not been considered to be genuine.

• On 18 October 2017, the CASA Investigator re-sent his email of 11 October 2017 to Ms Prentice’s office manager. In response, the CASA Investigator was advised by the office manager that it was Ms Prentice in the video footage, and provided the CASA Investigator with contact details of the event organiser, Mr Andy Turnbull.

• On 18 October 2017, the CASA Investigator spoke to Mr Turnbull by telephone, at which time Mr Turnbull responded to the CASA Investigator’s question about the number of people present at the event on 21 June 2017, estimating that number to be have been 50 or 60 persons. Mr Turnbull also provided a group photo of a number of the people present on the day of the event and his estimation of the dimensions of the area in which participants and observers of the day’s event would have been located.

• On 18 October 2017, a further email was sent to Ms Prentice’s office, asking whether Ms Prentice recalled the operation of the drone by Mr Ashby on 21 June 2017, and if so, whether she could provide any information about that operation. No response has been received to this email.

• On 23 October 2017, on the basis of the evidence available and an assessment of the apparent risks involved, in keeping with the applicable enforcement-related protocols it was determined that further investigation was not warranted. Accordingly, a counselling letter was issued to Mr Ashby admonishing him about his drone flight on 21 June 2017. With the closure of the investigation into this matter, no further attempts were made to contact Ms Prentice.

Answered Date

22/12/2017


&..QONs 116 & 117:

Answer
In speaking with Mr Ashby about his operation of a drone at Parliament House on 21 June 2017, the CASA Investigator did not ask Mr Ashby how many people he (Mr Ashby) believed were present at the time, or the identity of any of those individuals who were present.

However, on 18 October 2017, the CASA Investigator spoke to Mr Andy Turnbull (the event organiser) by telephone. Mr Turnbull said the number of people present at the event on 21 June 2017 was estimated to have been 50 or 60 persons.

Download question with answer

Answered Date

22/12/2017
 

Answer
The CASA Investigator who spoke with Mr Ashby about Mr Ashby’s operation of a drone in the parliamentary precincts on 21 June 2017 kept written record of his exchanges with Mr Ashby.

Download question with answer

Answered Date

22/12/2017
Now this is where it gets interesting because we actually have the answers for the NX QONs related to the CASA Sydney Regional office 8+ year embuggerance of DJ... Rolleyes
The first one is a classic example of the legalese word weasel confections that CASA LSD (i.e. Dr Aleck) deploy when trying to subvert answering the question honestly... Dodgy
Quote:QON 119 to 123:

Answer
The standard form recommendation (SFR), as tabled, is incomplete in that the delegate has not indicated on the form whether they agree or disagree with the recommendation and signed accordingly. While a document signed by the delegate that agreed with the action has not been located, the SFR was acted upon in that the condition was added to the flight crew licence.

However, the condition on the flight crew member’s licence was not created by this SFR rather the SFR recommended the condition be printed on the licence. The condition originated from an agreement between the pilot and the Executive Manager CASA Operations contained in a letter to the pilot dated 27 March 2012. The conditions are valid because of this letter, regardless of whether the process to have the condition statement added to the flight crew licence was not completed correctly.

Download question with answer

Answered Date

22/12/2017

Answer
Refer to Committee question number 119.

Download question with answer

Answered Date

22/12/2017

Answer
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau’s (ATSB) draft report for the reopened investigation into ‘Ditching of Israel Aircraft Westwind 1124A aircraft, VH-NGA, 5 km SW of Norfolk Island Airport on 18 November 2009’ (AO-2009-072) was distributed in accordance with the actions contemplated by sections 9 and 10 of the Memorandum of Understanding between the ATSB and CASA.

CASA personnel to whom copies of the draft report were provided were authorised to review the draft report in accordance with Section 26 (4) of the Transport Safety Investigation Act 2003, which permits disclosure and copying of draft reports necessary for the purpose of (a) preparing submissions on the draft report; or (b) taking steps to remedy safety issues that are identified in the draft report.

Download question with answer

Answered Date

22/12/2017

Answer
The documents in question were not provided in response to a request made under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act). Rather, in keeping with principles reflected in the FOI Act, CASA provided the documents to the individual involved as personal information pertaining to him, in accordance with an administrative access arrangement, by which agencies are encouraged to release documents in response to requests outside the formal process set out in the FOI Act.

In accordance with the Commonwealth Information Publication Scheme, documents released pursuant to administrative access arrangements are not required to be published in an agency’s FOI Disclosure Log.

Had the documents in question been released to the applicant under the FOI Act, they would have been exempt from publication in CASA’s FOI Disclosure Log under section 11C of the FOI Act because, in CASA’s view, their publication would have involved an unreasonable disclosure of personal information.

Download question with answer

Answered Date

22/12/2017

Answer
CASA has taken no regulatory action against any person identified in the initial ATSB investigation report (AO-2009-072) released on 30 August 2012, or in the final ATSB investigation report published on 23 November 2017, who could be considered as contributing to the accident, other than the Pilot in Command.

Download question with answer


Answered Date

22/12/2017
 
MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
Beware the Bureaucrat's spin - Confused

Although the uptake of submissions to the RRAT Senate Inquiry into - The operation, regulation and funding of air route service delivery to rural, regional and remote communities - is so far modest, I note that the CASA CEO Carmody has not wasted time in responding to the committee's inquiries... Rolleyes : 24 Civil Aviation Safety Authority  (PDF 1409 KB)                    

Still trying to get my head around this cleverly crafted spin & bulldust from our professional bureaucrat CEO:

Quote:OFFICE OF THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

CASA Ref- G/16/878

December 2017

Dr Jane Thomson
Committee Secretary
Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport
References Committee
Parliament House
CANBERRA ACT 2600

Dear Dr Thomson

Inquiry into the operation, regulation and funding of air route service delivery to rural, regional and remote communities

Thank you for your emails of 22 November and 6 December 2017 inviting the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) to make a submission to the above Inquiry.

Your email of 6 December provided further advice, namely that the Committee would like to identify all the regulatory and compliance costs involved with running an airline or managing an aerodrome. You also indicated that, as the regulatory framework differs according to the scale and usage of an aerodrome, the Committee would be interested in understanding what the regulations are and how they differ from one aerodrome to another as well as what cost impost this poses on respective aerodromes.

I am happy to provide some preliminary information on these topics ..

• A list of CASA fees and charges

CASA is required by Government policy to undertake cost recovery arrangements and a list of fees and charges is attached. Please note that, technically speaking, all CASA fees and charges in the Civil Aviation (Fees) Regulation 1995 are applicable to regional airlines and aerodromes (the exceptions being Part 17 'Unmanned Aircraft and Rockets', Part 19 'Air Traffic Service Training Providers' and Part 21 'Air Traffic Service Providers'). The licensing Parts are applicable to individuals but usually their employer would pay on their behalf.

There is no cost/price differentiation for the fees based on locality of the applicant. Rather the applicable price or hourly rate is determined by the complexity of the service being sought by the applicant. There has been no price increase in CASA's charges or the hourly rates since July 2007.

• Information on the regulatory distinctions between various types of aerodromes

I attach a summary of the regulatory framework governing aerodromes. Please note that CASA is presently undertaking a post implementation review of Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR) Part 139 including the subsidiary Manual of Standards.

The proposal is to remove the registered aerodrome category and replace the certification category with a scalable model - whereby aerodrome systems and the resultant regulatory requirements are scaled against safety requirements and the resultant risk (represented as the number of passenger and aircraft movements at the aerodrome per annum).

More details can be found in the Notice of Proposed Rule Making on the CASA web site at: https://consultation.casa.gov.au/regulat...ogram/nprm 1426as/. Industry consultation has now closed and CASA intends to facilitate the making of the new regulations by the third quarter of 2018.

The provision of air services is largely dependent on the facility requirements of the aircraft operator against the capability and capacity of an aerodrome, as provided by the aerodrome operator. Prior amendments to the Part 139 Manual of Standards in 2014 reflected a change in regulatory policy where specific aircraft requirements where 'delinked' from the aerodrome standards. The aerodrome operator is thus able to build and upgrade their infrastructure based on commercial/cost considerations and can then nominate their facility capability to CASA. CASA then manages its compliance and surveillance functions based on this nomination.

CASA's ruleset under CASR Part 139 intends to support the effective utilisation of all
aerodromes to an acceptable level of safety. CASA also conducts surveillance on aircraft
operators that use certified or registered aerodromes to ensure that the aerodromes they use are safe and suitable for the aircraft type, operation and resultant risk is considered.

I trust this information is of assistance. I also wish to flag that following submissions from other parties to the Inquiry, CASA may make a supplementary submission in response but is also willing to provide any further information that the Committee may require, including responding to questions in writing.

Yours sincerely

Shane Carmody
Chief Executive Officer and
Director of Aviation Safety

'delinked' - Huh  


[Image: delink_from.png]

"..Prior amendments to the Part 139 Manual of Standards in 2014 reflected a change in regulatory policy where specific aircraft requirements where 'delinked' from the aerodrome standards..."

Is that like zero care, zero association and total abrogation of all liability and responsibility when it comes to airports?? - Dodgy


MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
Battlelines being drawn up at the Senate Estimates corral -  Confused

Via the Weekend Oz:



Senate to grill CASA over its ban on medical air services operator

[Image: 33ca46a648adbda789d4549472308de6?width=650]

Marc De Stoop, the managing director of FalconAir/ Picture: James Croucher

The Australian 12:00AM February 3, 2018

[Image: ean_higgins.png]

EAN HIGGINS
Reporter Sydney
@EanHiggins


The aviation watchdog faces a Senate grilling this month over its decision to ground all pilots of a small medical air services operator over a technical breach by one of them, which resulted in a Sydney patient missing out on a heart transplant.

South Australia’s Rex Patrick has vowed to interrogate Civil Aviation Safety Authority officers when they appear before a Senate estimates hearing on February 27 over the event just before Christmas, which was exposed by The Australian.

Senator Patrick, of the Nick Xenophon Team, said the move by CASA to ground FalconAir, which operates out of Sydney and Brisbane providing medical evacuation and organ transplant flights with three aircraft, lacked practical logic, flew in the face of urgings by CareFlight and other organisations that the service was needed, and ran against legal precedent.

“Common sense hasn’t prevailed here, jurisprudence has been ignored,” said Senator Patrick, who replaced Mr Xenophon in the Senate in November.

The move comes as the managing director of FalconAir, Marc De Stoop, said since he went public over the aborted transplant mission, CASA had told him it would put his air service through two more costly and complex audits, a move he described as unprecedented.

“They are all over me like a rash,” Mr De Stoop, who is president of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, told The Weekend Australian.

“We have done nothing really wrong — we have made some mistakes about our procedure,” he said. One of his pilots remains grounded.

“If they keep it up, we don’t have a business, 10 Australians don’t have a job, and the country does not have a vital service.”

As revealed by The Australian on December 8, CASA grounded not only FalconAir’s check pilot because an audit revealed he flew a competency flight on the wrong type of aircraft, but also the other six FalconAir pilots he had tested because the checks were consequently deemed invalid.

Mr De Stoop, with the backing of international air ambulance group CareFlight, pleaded with CASA to grant temporary exemptions from the grounding for two pilots so he could have one crew ready to respond to medical emergencies over the holiday period.

CASA refused.

An air ambulance flight ­broker contacted FalconAir on December 16 to ask whether the company could fly a St Vincent’s Hospital transplant team to Auckland on an urgent mission to take out the heart from a donor and bring it back to ­Sydney to transplant into a ­recipient patient.

As a result of the groundings, FalconAir had to say no, the broker was unable to find an alter­native service, and after three hours the transplant team determined it was too late and the mission had to be cancelled. At last report, the patient was still on the transplant waiting list.

A CASA spokeswoman said the regulator was “confident its actions in this matter were in the best interests of aviation safety and within the requirements of the law”.

& comment in reply from Sandy... Wink

Quote:Alexander


Thank goodness for the Australian, the only newspaper with the guts and integrity to shine a light on a potential advertiser which might illuminate faulty administration or worse. 

The vast bulk of the aviation community have no confidence or respect for the (Un) Civil Aviation Safety Authority. Since CASA was morphed into a Commonwealth corporate, 30 years ago, sitting outside the Public Service, it has embarked on a make work program of rule changing so stupendous and wasteful to defy belief. The latest tranche of rules framed as strict liability criminal acts is so convoluted, counterproductive to safety, run into thousands of pages. The line of which no other developed country has to put up with, ie to the US and NZ we are a joke.

As a retired Commercial pilot and instructor formerly holding a number of CASA approvals, I can attest without any reservation that the heart transplant flight should have gone ahead. FalconAir’s pilots are extremely well qualified and for CASA to not allow a week or two put back of annual additional check flights across a fleet of the Falcon jets of different model number is beyond comprehension. Plain unreasonable.

The most common feeling about this sorry saga in the aviation community would be disgust at the treatment of FalconAir. We can only hope that the Aus continues it’s expose’ and that the Senate exposes CASA for what it has become, a make work salary factory that gobbles up a $billion dollars every two or three years and is destroying General Aviation into the bargain. One could form the view that CASA’s action against FalconAir is to make an example of them, show who’s boss, especially that the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association has been highly critical of CASA in its fight to save GA. Tactics of the bully. Alex in the Rises.

Barrier...Airtex...Polar...Falconair - Err anyone else spot a trend here.. Huh




MTF...P2  Cool
Reply
UTB tote board heats up at the Senate corral - Rolleyes

(UTB - under the buses)

RRAT news
In the lead up to the Additional Estimates we are still waiting for the official timetable to be released and some outstanding QON to be answered but; in the meantime, there is some other news on the Senate RRAT committee front.

Yesterday in the Senate it was announced that the committee has decided to extend the reporting date for - The operation, regulation and funding of air route service delivery to rural, regional and remote communities - Inquiry: http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/sear...%2F0000%22

Quote:The Clerk: A notification of extension of time for a committee to report has been lodged in respect of the following:

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee—Air route service delivery to rural, regional and remote communities—extended from 30 March to 20 September 2018.
                     
I thought this was interesting because when I last looked the submission uptake for this important inquiry was quite disappointing. However on review I was heartened to observe that there is now over 100 submissions and growing - Submissions  Wink

I also noted that one of those submissions was a short 3 page letter from ASA CEO Harfwit... Huh

73 Airservices Australia (PDF 1174 KB)

The part of this short note that intrigued me was the Harfwit's weasel worded bollocks under the heading 'Enhancing efficiency'

Quote:Enhancing efficiency

Airservices acknowledges that our service charges for Terminal Navigation, Aviation Rescue and Fire Fighting and Enroute services are part of the costs borne by airlines and operators that fly in and around major regional locations.

For an average regional service flying 800km (e.g between Mildura and Sydney) we charge less than $200 (or $7 per passenger). For a larger aircraft flying a longer haul regional service of 1,300kms (e.g. between Perth and Karratha) we charge approximately $800 (or $10 per passenger).

To minimise the cost burden of our services, we have worked hard over the last few years to improve our business and be more responsive, agile and flexible in delivering value to our customers while maintaining and enhancing our safety performance. This work has enabled us to maintain prices at the same level they were in 2015 and put us in a position to manage price growth into the future.

We are doing this whilst delivering our largest infrastructure project which will replace our core air traffic management system with Defence ('OneSKY program). This program will improve our service capability and deliver a range of economic and safety benefits, including for regional, rural and remote communities. To improve the safety and efficiency of traffic in regional areas we are also investing in new surveillance services across 11 regional locations through the expansion of our Automatic Dependant Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-8) services.

Whilst the cost imposition of meeting safety regulatory requirements at smaller, low traffic ports can unduly burden our regional customers, our price-setting strategy continues to strike a balance between economically efficient prices that enable the cost of our services to be recovered, while minimising undesirable distortions to airport usage.

To address this imbalance we apply cross subsidies whereby charges are levied below the cost of services provision in a number of price sensitive locations including the regions.

Whilst we try to move service charges to fully recover costs, they are no more than an
estimated rate of annual inflation. These subsidies include:
• network enroute subsidies, whereby most regional airport prices (e.g. Albury, Tamworth) are capped and subsidised by charges for enroute services; and
• network based aviation rescue and fire fighting services subsidies (to smaller category 6 aircraft) which reduces the services charge at low traffic volume regional airports (e.g. Ballina, Broome).
• capital city basin subsidies, whereby capital city general aviation airport prices (e .g.
Bankstown) are subsidised by the major airport (Kingsford Smith);

For smaller aircraft operations (weighing less than 5 tonnes) we do not levy aviation rescue and fire fighting charges. If the same aircraft incurs less than $500 in charges per annum for our other services, we also waive our fees.

Our operating environment is strictly governed by legislation and decisions made by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). These constraints limit our ability to choose the level of service we supply at each airport and, also, how we achieve that level of service, which in turn, has a financial and operational impact on our customers. Working closely with CASA, we strive to improve the economic outcomes for our regional customers through regulatory reform. An example of this is our recent work into the Aviation Safety Regulatory Review where we supported a shift to risk-based assessment approach for the establishment and disestablishment of aviation rescue and fire fighting services.

Airservices number one priority continues to be on the safety of our customers.
Nonetheless, we will continue to maintain our focus on our obligation to minimise costs in order to support the growth of industry.

Did you pick the UTB moment - Rolleyes

Of interest I note that the Oz is also monitoring this inquiry and today picked up on the OneSKY waffle in the Harfwit submission:


OneSKY ‘a boon for bush’
[Image: f4aff8d1c42f6dc372a57c1409b69a42]12:00AM
Airservices has declared that the ambitious One­SKY project will benefit bush communities.


Airservices has told the Senate inquiry into regional airfares the rollout of OneSKY, the joint project with the Department of Defence to integrate traffic management systems, would “deliver a range of economic and safety benefits, including for regional, rural and remote communities”.

The submission comes as the Australian National Audit Office has recently found that the project is running almost 2½ years behind schedule. Airservices this week said a contract with French aerospace giant Thales would be signed by the end of next month.


The Oz has also picked up on another submission from the WA Department of Transport:


Costs threaten critical services
[Image: 2a7262eef8caf947b2f406a530a6ed32]12:00amANNABEL HEPWORTH

Extending particular airport screening rules could see some ‘critical’ air services abandoned
The Western Australia Department of Transport has warned that extending particular airport screening rules could see some “critical” air services abandoned.

The WA Department of Transport has also told the Senate inquiry into air services to rural, regional and remote areas that potential changes from a federal review of airport security screening “may have an adverse impact on airfares in regional WA”.

The department says that if current arrangements requiring screening passengers on airliners weighing more than 20 tonnes were extended to all regional public air services, “there is a significant likelihood critical air services in WA would be discontinued.”

“This would include air services to Laverton, Leonora, Meekatharra, Mount Magnet, Wiluna, Halls Creek, Kalumburu and Monkey Mia. Most of these routes carry significantly less than 5000 passengers per year,” the submission says. “If this were to occur there would be a major impact on these towns and this would not be an acceptable outcome to these communities.”

Then Infrastructure and Transport Minister Darren Chester ordered the Inspector of Transport Security to conduct the review last year.

The department says that if security requirements are tightened, “the cost of implementation and ongoing operation needs to be considered by the commonwealth including what financial assistance is made available to affected regional airports.”

The Australian Airports Association said that if new screening requirements are needed at regional airports, “it needs to be understood this cannot be accommodated without significant financial assistance”.

The association says “significant” cost imposts “in the worst case, may result in cessation of air services linking regional centres, impacting regional economic development”.

The Senate’s Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, chaired by Liberal National Party senator Barry O’Sullivan, is inquiring into regional airfares.


TICK TOCK MT & BJ -  Confused


MTF...P2  Cool
Reply
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.  (John Donne).

Alexander  “The most common feeling about this sorry saga in the aviation community would be disgust at the treatment of Falcon Air.”

There was late last evening a very serious, sober, late meeting of the BRB. The small gathering had been arranged for one purpose only, to hear, first hand, a report from Canberra. Disappointment and dismay created a very sombre atmosphere. The general feeing by briefing’s end was that industry may well have to survive a little longer on a diet of disgust; for there was little in the way of hope or cheer to report.

Alexander  “We can only hope that the Aus continues it’s expose’ and that the Senate exposes CASA for what it has become, a make work salary factory that gobbles up a $billion dollars every two or three years and is destroying General Aviation into the bargain.”

Well Alex, that may or may not occur before the end of the century, but I for one will not be holding my breath, nor making the journey to Canberra to cheer the ‘Senate’ along, life is too short. “So what was it?” asked one of the BRB – “Dunno” came the reply, “but I can tell you what it was not”. We waited a short while as P7 collected his thoughts. “I believed it was to be a briefing for the Senators on the second Pel-Air report, it was hoped that the briefing on that topic could be expanded into a discussion on the way ATSB and CASA acted during the investigation and production of the first report, thus exposing through the documented, almost picture perfect examples of Airtex, Polar, Barrier, Skymaster and Falcon why a reform of the regulator and some sane leadership was essential”. “That is not going to happen”. (Cue in: 'the crack of doom').

I’ll paraphrase the rest. It seems to have been more like a police interrogation rather than a ‘briefing’ to provide useful information; but arse backwards. In the normal manner of such things a witness provides a sworn statement – it is, normally, up to the Bobby’s to ‘investigate’ the lawyers to argue and the judge to make a ruling. Not so this time; it seems as if all must be slowly spoon fed, in small bite sized pieces to a nestling who just doesn’t get it. There is a thirty odd year history of commissions, inquiry, investigation, report and gods know what else, at great public cost, providing a small mountain of rock solid, tested evidence available. The  last Senate outing into the ‘inquiry’ paddock netted 37 Senate recommendations, which have been completely ignored. Then there was the ministerial ASSR stemming from the Senate findings which provided another 30 odd recommendations; once again. ignored, then denigrated into ‘opinion’. In short, CASA keep running rings around the Senate, by the time any committee lumbers, slowly into action, the bird has flown away. By the time every tiny piece of the jig-saw puzzle is put together so that a clear picture may emerge; there’s no one, this side of history, alive to enjoy it.  

Alexander  “One could form the view that CASA’s action against Falcon Air is to make an example of them, show who’s boss, especially that the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association has been highly critical of CASA in its fight to save GA. Tactics of the bully. Alex in the Rises.”

And so it will continue for the foreseeable future if the RRAT committee continues at the plodding, pedantic speed it seems to prefer; it is, as P7 put it, like trying to explain colour to a disinterested blind man.

The consensus? Well, there may be a small fireworks display for the masses, even the beheading of a few insignificant sacrificial lambs, which may be fun. But any form of ‘deep and meaningful’ reform of the regulator remains a very small speck on a distant horizon, which we approach at the speed of a snail, uncertain of direction, bereft of understanding, trapped in amber and in no particular hurry, whatsoever.

Resolution. – We shall hold the jackets, watch with interest, keep the powder dry, but not invest in the outcome. Investment requires faith and belief. Maybe next time. There will be a next time, rest assured; for ATSB and CASA will continue until the next, inconvenient red light, wait it out and then continue on their merry way; same old, same old. History – anyone?

"What, will the line stretch out to the crack of doom?"


Toot toot.
Reply
Additional Estimates timetable released - Shy

Quote:2017-18 Additional estimates
Program
Monday, 26 February 2018
Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities
Program (PDF 47KB)



[Image: Add-Est-1.jpg]

[Image: AddEst-2.jpg]


MTF...P2 Cool
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Final CASA Supp Estimates QON answered.. Dodgy

Yet another example of the disrespect for the Senate by the CASA Iron Ring - Less than 4 days out from the Additional Estimates and CC finally completes the answering of the previous estimates QON - Up yours Senators...  Confused

AQON received yesterday:


QON 112:

Answer
An independent review of the fatigue rules for operators and pilots contained in Civil Aviation Order (CAO) 48.1 Instrument 2013 is currently underway. It is being undertaken at the request of the CASA Board in response to feedback received from various sections of the aviation industry. CASA will consider the recommendations of the independent review in early 2018, including any impact on transition periods.

In April 2013, CASA introduced new rules for the management of pilot fatigue set out in CAO 48.1 Instrument 2013. Amendments to the new rules were made in July 2016 to adjust some flight and duty time limitations, along with providing additional sets of prescriptive limitations tailored to specific sectors of the aviation industry, for example, ballooning operations, medical transport and emergency service operators, and daylight aerial work operations (such as helicopter mustering).

CASA provided grandfathered operators—those who held, or had applied for, an Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) prior to 30 April 2013—with a 3 year period transition to the new rules (this includes Part 141 certificate holders (flying schools) who held an AOC with flying training privileges prior to 30 April 2013). However, all other operators—those who applied for an AOC or Part 141 certificate on or after 30 April 2013—must comply with the new rules immediately.

The transition deadline for grandfathered operators has been extended three times:

  1. In 2015, by 12 months, in order for CASA to develop improvements to the rules in response to feedback on how the new rules were impacting different types of operators and included new limits and appendices
  2. In 2016, by a further 12 months, in response to industry feedback that more time was needed to incorporate amendments made to the rules in July 2016.
  3. This year, by a further 6 months, in order to enable sufficient time for the independent review of the fatigue rules to be carried out, and for recommendations to be considered.
The current timeline is for transition to the new rules to be complete by 31 October 2018.


QON 113:

[*]Answer
The offence occurred on 29 October 2016 at Bunnings Warehouse in Sunbury, Victoria. On 8 December 2016, an individual was issued with an Aviation Infringement Notice (AIN) for a breach of subregulation 101.395(2) of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 — operating a powered model aircraft at a distance of less than 30 metres from a person not directly associated with the operation of the aircraft.

The penalty imposed for the AIN was based on the formula set out in regulation 296A of the Civil Aviation Regulations 1988 of 5 penalty units or $900. At the time of the incident, the value of a penalty unit was $180.





[*]
QON 115:

Answer
Between 1 November 2015 and 8 November 2017, CASA issued 23 counselling letters to individuals in relation to apparent breaches of the regulations relating to the operation of remotely piloted aircraft.

Of these, one was issued to an individual who held a remote pilot licence issued under Part 101 of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998. None were issued to any individual holding a flight crew licence issued by CASA under Part 61 of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations.





[*]
QON 118:

Answer CASA does not have before it an application or formal request seeking designation of prohibited, restricted or danger areas in respect of any area within the parliamentary precincts.

With respect to flights over the parliamentary precincts—CASA has:
• responded to requests from Senior Adviser Security Policy and Education, Department of Parliamentary Service outlining regulations relevant to the operation of aircraft in the vicinity of Australian Parliament House (APH) −11 August 2015
• met with the Australian Federal Police (AFP) to discuss airspace management over APH − 11 November 2016
• responded to AFP request about airspace management over APH − 21 February 2017
• responded to APH Protective Operations request about process for establishing airspace restrictions over APH and information required to substantiate an airspace restriction − 31 May 2017
• responded to a Question on Notice from the Regional and Rural Affairs and Transport Committee Remotely Piloted Aircraft System Inquiry about the regulations regarding declaration of airspace over the APH − 20 September 2017




[*]
QON 124:

Answer
On 8 August 2017, in the course of an exchange with Mr Ashby about Mr Ashby’s operation of a drone in the Parliamentary precincts on 21 June 2017, Mr Ashby advised the CASA Investigator that he (Mr Ashby) had spoken to the AFP about his intentions, and that the AFP officer(s) with whom he spoke advised that they did not have any concerns about the location of his flight provided he remained a certain distance (not particularised) from Parliament House itself.

On 27 September 2017, the CASA Investigator sent an email to Mr Ashby, asking him (amongst other things) to identify the name(s) of the AFP personnel with whom he spoke, or the contact number he used to make that contact. Mr Ashby did not provide a response to that question.

On 23 October 2017, on the basis of the evidence available and an assessment of the apparent risks involved, in keeping with the applicable enforcement-related protocols it was determined that further investigation was not warranted. Accordingly, a counselling letter was issued to Mr Ashby admonishing him about his drone flight on 21 June 2017. With the closure of the investigation into this matter, no further attempts were made to seek a response to the question from Mr Ashby.

Mr Ashby does not hold either a remote pilot licence or a flight crew licence issued by CASA.




[*]
Of all the QON from Supp Estimates I note there is still one outstanding Senator Sterle QON yet to be answered by ASA's Harfwit:


Quote:+Overdue Yes
Asked Of  Airservices Australia
Proof Hansard Page/Written Written
Portfolio Question Number 475
Question

At the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee Estimates Hearing on the 23 October 2017, Airservices Australia were questioned about the continued use of non-CASA approved foams, and whether there is a national management plan to deal with the exposure to ARFFS firefighters to PFAS. At page 165 of the Proof Hansard Airservices Australia CEO Jason Harfield is recorded as stating Airservices Australia is currently reviewing its work health and safety controls:

Senator McCARTHY: A national management plan around dealing with PFAS? Mr Harfield: Yes. We have a national plan where we're going through preliminary site testing at all our locations, and they are underway. We just released last week the results for the Gold Coast for some off airport testing, and we continue to work with the Prime Minister and Cabinet PFAS task force for the whole-of-government approach, as well as, as mentioned before, continuing to review our work health and safety controls to ensure that they are as effective as possible.

Questions:
1.What controls are currently in place?
2.If PPE is your primary control, how and when is decontamination required?
3.who will be responsible for reviewing these controls?
4.When did this review begin?
5.In terms of the legacy of PFAS contamination, have you tested all ARFF fire grounds for PFAS?
6.Are firefighters still being exposed to PFAS when they train on the ARFFS fire grounds?
7.Is Airservices Australia resisting providing testing information to the firefighters union who have made four FOI Requests and are yet to be provided with the information requested?
8.Why is Airservices Australia not blood testing or health monitoring the firefighters for PFAS?
9.Why is Airservices Australia still using the non CASA approved foam at Darwin and Townsville? Is this a cost-saving measure that is putting the lives of firefighters, and the health of the community surrounding those fire grounds at risk?
[*]

Hmm...wonder what the sticking point is - Huh


MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
Flabbergasted?

Yes we were; at the performance on the Senate ballroom dance floor as the band played “Believe it if you like” - (a Foxtrot).

The foxtrot is a smooth, progressive dance characterized by long, continuous flowing movements across the dance floor. It is danced to big band (usually vocal) music. The dance is similar in its look to waltz, although the rhythm is in a 44 time signature instead of 34. Developed in the 1910s, the foxtrot reached its height of popularity in the 1930s, and remains practiced today.

“Now we are flabbergasted and bored from morning to night”. That too. But on the bright side, I do have a rather lovely, only partly rusted bridge I could sell the Senate committee attending last evenings gala performance of the “CASA sells a pup” benefit event . That committee is so gullible I could probably jack up my asking price a bit, if I said I’d throw in the new, (government supplied) paint at a discounted price.

What a hoot, what a masterpiece in the art of deception, a triumph of obfuscation and what a stern warning to those who dare to challenge the ‘authority’. Mind you no one did; Oh Patrick threw a few small snowballs (‘no-balls”?) into the gates of hell, which were about as effective as a chocolate fire wall. Then B; (Braces) O’Sullivan, decided the gently lobbed snowballs weren’t working, so he tried peanuts instead. Well, the monkeys loved ‘em, ate ‘em all up and had the courtesy to say thank you, before skipping away, laughing their hats off.

What a bloody shambles; thank the gods there are many months between this episode and the next.

I have just left the BRB crowd, still sitting, dumb struck in their chairs. Once they regain some semblance of normality and the absolute fury subsides into anger against the very committee they supported – I did say supported – in the past tense; I expect their dismay and disgust will be expressed; fully and fluently. I, personally, am inclined not to condense, translate and edit those comments; I may send them along, unedited to the crowd that, one dark night bought the Harbour Bridge and some paint.

But then, I ask myself “would it do any good?”

P7 supplied the answer a couple of weeks ago – rasped out over his first ale; “Forget the Senate committee Son”. If only I’d listened, and asked " why?'. Tonight I asked that very question; the answer, short, terse and pretty much to the point – and verbatim I do quote it. (Nod to Banjo).

“O’Sullivan will be eaten alive by Hood on the Pel Air thing –we tried to brief him – he just wanted to do the talking, lots of,  about anything but ". “Patrick will be shooed away by the full force of the CASA first eleven like a silly goose and O’Sullivan will trip over his own boot laces; that’s why” “Now, be a good lad, shut up and  get ‘em in, before I die of shame and thirst”.


P2 will, diligently, put up the Hansard video – then, you too may be ‘flabbergasted’ by the brilliant bullshit and the ease with which it was peddled off to a bunch of yokels.

"And Jesus wept"; but not alone, not this night at least.

Selah.
Reply
Additional Estimates Hansard is out - Blush

Well at least there is one thing that Senator Barry O'bfuscate can't put a go slow on and that's the Hansard... Wink

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee
(Senate-Monday, 26 February 2018)
Speaking of Hansard I noticed that for some strange reason the following short statement by the Acting Chair Senator Sterle was clipped from the official Hansard - WTF? Dodgy







Senator PATRICK: Let's hope the audit comes out successfully.

Mr Carmody : The audit is going to be issued to FalconAir this week. I understand that the audit report is expected to be issued to them by the end of this week.

Proceedings suspended from 20:42 to 21:01

CHAIR: We will resume the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee hearing for additional estimates for 2017-18.

Also here are the video segments so far... Rolleyes

The ATSB:
 WARNING! - Bucket will be required Confused














& Carmody Capers and his minions:
























MTF...P2 Cool
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(02-28-2018, 12:14 PM)Peetwo Wrote: Additional Estimates Hansard is out - Blush

Well at least there is one thing that Senator Barry O'bfuscate can't put a go slow on and that's the Hansard... Wink

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee
(Senate-Monday, 26 February 2018)

Update: Tabled docs & more video. - Shy

















Australian Transport Safety Bureau
RPAS data Feb 2018
26/02/2018 PDF 625KB

Airservices Australia
OneSky Statement
26/02/2018 PDF 601KB

Dr Steven Kennedy, Secretary, Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities

Notification of Differences to ICAO Standards and Recommended Practices
22/02/2018 PDF 379KB

Quote:[Image: Dear-Barry-O-1.jpg]

[Image: Dear-Barry-O-2.jpg]

[Image: Dear-Barry-O-3.jpg]

Hmm...funny parts of that blurb from Secretary Kennedy sound very familiar... Huh

Ah yes I see Lachie is referenced at the top of Secretary Kennedy's correspondence to the Chair: Dear Lachie  

MTF...P2  Cool

Ps Off the UP Lead Balloon provides a frank assessment review of both the ATSB & CASA Estimate's sessions:

Quote:Classification of Operations and ‘Safety’  #1

CASA frequently proves the rule that there’s no such thing as unutterable nonsense. The most recent proof is its performance before Senate Estimates on 26 February. (That performance also shows that the current DAS has been drinking - or has perhaps been force-fed - plentiful quantities of the “safety of air navigation” rhetoric Kool-Aide.) (The Hansard should be available here: https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary...onal_estimates. I haven’t worked out how to post the video.)

Apparently an operator was chock full of pilots who were “competent” but not “proficient”. They were not “proficient” because they had not done proficiency checks frequently enough in accordance with that most Orwellian of aviation regulatory tools: the Operations Manual (the content of which is not “approved” by CASA but instead effectively dictated by CASA for hapless small operators).

It appears that the periodicities for recurrent training included in an Operations Manual on the basis of someone’s strong opinion become an objective truth with automatic negative safety consequences if not complied with. Go figure.

This apparently meant the pilots were not sufficiently ‘safe’ to engage complex jets in commercial operations. However, the pilots were apparently sufficiently ‘safe’ to engage the same aircraft in private operations or conduct “mercy flights”. Go figure.

This distinction was justified by CASA on the basis of the usual “knowledge and acceptance of risk” fiction.

Apparently, if a non-proficient pilot has an emergency in a complex jet that s/he can’t handle during a private operation or “mercy flight”, the people killed on the ground know of and accept that risk. Not so if it was a commercial operation. Go figure.

I’m sure all POB the private flights would know the probabilities of the PIC having an emergency that s/he couldn’t handle at the proficiency check due date minus 30 days, and the probabilities of the PIC having an emergency that s/he couldn’t handle at the proficiency due date plus 30 days. The number of zeros after the decimal point in the percentages of each would have been no impediment to a fully-informed and rational assessment and acceptance of the risk. Punters boarding the aircraft on a commercial flight know neither percentage but - apparently through magic or osmosis - accept exposure to the first level of risk but do not accept exposure to the second level of risk. Go figure.

The valid practical point made in the RQAC v CASA Federal Court matter - that a pilot doesn’t become a dangerous Gumby automatically after the due date for some recurrent test/training/check becomes due - was effectively dismissed by CASA. The dismissal was on the basis of the legal difference between a failure to comply with a recurrent requirement imposed as a condition on an ATO delegation on the one hand, and a failure to comply with a recurrent requirement imposed as a consequence of the obligation to comply with an Operations Manual on the other. The latter is a breach of - gasp - the law.

I’m guessing that if the operator had unilaterally amended its Operations Manual, under CAR 215(5), so as to extend the periods between proficiency checks and turn the breach into a non-breach, the pilots wouldn’t have magically become ‘safer’ and, more importantly, CASA would have had a conniption and directed the operator under CAR 215(3) to change it back - thus demonstrating that the content of Operations Manuals is effectively dictated by CASA on the basis of someone’s strong opinion.

Apparently an aircraft ‘knows’ and a pilot’s biology ‘knows’ the difference between the pilot’s failure to comply with a recurrent requirement imposed as a condition on a delegation and the pilot’s failure to comply with a recurrent requirement imposed through an Operations Manual, with the latter producing a ‘less safe’ outcome. Go figure.

Struggling with the evident heavy burden of the safety of air navigation on his shoulders, the current DAS described the risk he took in granting an exemption to enable the least non-proficient pilots to lawfully engage in a commercial operation. I’m sure the DAS had, at his fingertips, the probability figures of the least non-proficient pilots having an emergency s/he couldn’t handle compared with a proficient pilot, as well as the probability at which an operation changes from ‘safe’ to ‘unsafe’.

The scariest thing - the scariest thing - is that they all appear earnestly to believe the nonsense they utter has a rational and causal connection with positive safety outcomes, and that they accordingly make a net positive difference to aviation safety.

Meanwhile, in ATSB land...

CASA’s performance followed the ATSB’s appearance, during the opening statement of which the Chief Commissioner went through the long list of general aviation tragedies in the last 18 or so months. The question whether there might be any causal connection between the spike in general aviation fatalities and the activities of the regulator didn’t arise. Go figure.

Oddly in my view (based on watching many, many Estimates hearings), the ATSB flick-passed questions about the second go at the NGA ditching investigation report to a lawyer. Apparently the responsible technical expert wasn’t available because s/he is based in Brisbane. Even if that’s a legitimate excuse for not fronting the Committee, one wonders why the ‘fallback’ was ATSB’s lawyer.

When asked whether NGA would have had enough fuel to make it to an alternate after arrival at YSNF, even if NGA had departed Apia with full fuel, the correct answer - no - was not forthcoming. The extra ‘thinking time’ and increased probabilities of getting a ‘lucky break’ in the weather at YSNF arising from full fuel were irrelevant to the specific question asked. It’s disappointing that the correct answer to the actual question wasn’t provided. But go figure.

& Vref in response:

I believe you would be referring to the requirements of CAR217, for certain operators to have a CASA approved check and training organisation, which must-as a minimum- provide 2 checks of competency in a 12 month period? That requirement is not someone’s opinion, it is law, the ops manual must have procedures that- if followed- will ensure compliance. If an operator can’t comply with this basic requirement and lets not one, but every single one of its pilots checks lapse, why should CASA let them continue to operate, and take the work away from everyone else who do spend the money on the checks and monitoring programs, sometimes sending their pilots overseas to jump in the sim? One pilot falling out of currency is one thing, every pilot being uncurrent is completely different.

& LB in reply:

Good legal points, vref. I was trying to make points about the substance of the circumstances and the safety fictions on the basis of which the classification of operations scheme and other aspects of the regulatory regime are justified.

I’d merely note on your legal points that:

(1) The ‘basic’ competency check periodicities in 217(3) were not etched in the stone tablets brought down by Moses from Mount Sinai. They are the manifestation of a human being’s strong opinion.

(2) 217 contains discretions and powers that result in CASA being able to dictate, on the basis of a human being’s strong opinion, the operators who must have a C&T system and the system’s content. “any other operator CASA specifies”. “The training and checking organisation and the tests and checks provided for therein shall be subject to the approval of CASA.”

Interestingly, CASA did not stop the operator in question from operating. CASA did not suspend the operator’s AOC or any of the pilots’ licences or ratings. CASA took the view that the operator was ‘safe enough’ to carry out private operations and “mercy flights”. So far as I can tell, the operator was in breach of CARs 215 and 217. What regulatory action should flow from that should depend on the substance of the safety risk. I imagine that the operator was so sh*t scared of the ‘nuclear option’ that it ‘grounded’ itself.

Unfortunately, the elephant in the Committee room was never spotted by the Committee: The vast difference between the regulator’s efforts to assist Pel Air to address the deficiencies discovered in Pel Air after the NGA ditching, on the one hand, and the regulator’s efforts to assist this operator to address the deficiencies discovered in this operator. Go figure. (Dominic James and others would no doubt be struck with the irony of the fact that the deficiencies were discovered in this operator during an attempt to conduct a flight so as to bring an end to the administrative torture being committed on Dom as a consequence of the NGA ditching.)

And the number of fatal accidents in GA over the last 18 or so months? Move on, nothing to see here.
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Iron Ring rules in AIOS inflicted Can'tberra-  Confused


The industry has "acquired institutionalised ostrichitis syndrome" (AIOS).


[Image: crisis.gif]


A bit like LB I have witnessed every RRAT Committee Estimates dating back to 2009 and in my opinion last evening's (above) session was one of the most bizarre but vivid examples of how a regulator with untrammelled power can be so disconnected from all reality when it comes to aviation businesses trying to be compliant with hugely overburdened rule set.  

If the underlining message of Monday evening's exposé of an ungoverned and seemingly totally out of control CASA was missed by the political elite maybe certain political party members, especially given on the record allegiances, might be able to relate better to the following from the REX Airlines submission to the Senate Air Routes etc. Inquiry... Huh



[Image: REX-1.jpg]
[Image: REX-2.jpg]

This part of the REX submission was also covered today in the Oz by Annabel Hepworth (note the typical weasel word response from Pinocchio Gobson):

Quote:Rex cries foul over regulation

[Image: 612a5483aa839b4dcd06cb879e4d7579]12:00amANNABEL HEPWORTH

Flight crew licensing, proposed fatigue regulation, lack of pilots: REX says the industry is under siege.

Rex says CASA regulations are causing costs to skyrocket

Regional Express has fired a broadside at “over-regulation” by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

Rex says part 61 of the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations that deals with flight crew licensing has added $250,000 to its annual training costs.

The regional carrier also says the proposed changes to the fatigue rules have the potential to drive up operating costs by more than $7 million annually.

In a submission, the airline has told the Senate inquiry into regional services that it has to invest a “copious amount of time and commercial resources into simply filling out, sending and monitoring paperwork for CASA expiries”.

“The bureaucratic approval process for licence upgrades, training and checking approvals and synthetic trainer (simulator) approvals, results in diminished use of crew resources and vital check and training delays,” it says.

“These matters incur a higher cost to the airline operation and this is exacerbated by the current shortage of pilots.”

The regional airline said despite years of regulatory reform efforts, there was “little benefit realised to operators in recent times”. The reform is “in some cases unsubstantiated or is often in response to pressure from various interest groups”.

CASA spokesman Peter Gibson said the body “recognises the regulatory reform program has not progressed as we would all have preferred and the outcomes have not always achieved the desired goals”.

He said CASA’s chief executive officer and director of aviation safety, Shane Carmody, had tackled this “by setting an ambitious deadline to complete the outstanding parts of the regulatory change program by the end of this year”.

“Mr Carmody has put in place new consultation mechanisms to ensure the aviation industry plays an effective and constructive role in the completion of the new regulations,” Mr Gibson said.

“The focus is on ensuring new regulations deliver the best possible outcomes for everyone in the aviation community.”

On the proposed new fatigue rules, the spokesman said an independent review of them would be delivered this month.

“CASA has removed the deadline for transition to new fatigue rules to give the aviation community time to consider the findings of the review and provide further feedback to CASA,” he said. “New fatigue rules will not be implemented until CASA has carefully studied all the review findings and aviation community feedback.”

The spokesman said the authority was aware of the financial impact of regulation and it sought “to minimise costs, but it is important to note that CASA’s fees for regulatory services have not increased for more than 10 years”.
 
Oh the ironies... Dodgy


MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
Begin at the beginning.

“Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.

Part 1: Estimates Monday Feb, 26, 2018.

It was now many, many years ago when a very young ‘K’ was learning the tricks of the climbing trade at an outward bound camp that a fairly silly, probably dangerous game was developed; but it seemed like great fun at the time, bumps, bruises and cuts accepted as routine. We had an instructor who believed military type obstacle courses were part of our essential learning. Only his in his version, we were paired off and ‘roped’ together, to learn how to manage ‘as a team’. ‘We’ took this a little further (after hours) and turned it into a ‘thee legged race’ combined with ‘blind mans bluff’, it was hilarious to watch and jolly difficult to do. You had one leg tied to your mates just above the ankle, the blindfolds put in place and you listened to the directions of the rest, while trying to beat the obstacle course time record. As said great fun; just a bunch of kids playing at silly buggers, nothing to loose except some skin and a little pride. Not so for a Senate committee, playing for keeps.

I mention this as the only way I can think of to illustrate and summarise the ‘performance’ of the Senate team at last Monday’s Estimates. The performance reminded me of my very first run at ‘our version’ of the obstacle course game. Blind, hobbled and NDI. The only difference is they were not playing for fun; it was a deadly serious, neck or nothing race. The results have raised many questions and much anger within the BRB and IOS. I have now watched the entire ATSB and CASA sessions; twice. Thrice even; if you count the original session which kept me close to the bucket. I digress.

I have also managed a long chat with P7, who, as mentioned previously, made the pilgrimage to Canberra, ostensibly to assist brief the SEC on the second Pel-Air report. It is his opinion that this is the point where the seeds of Monday’s debacle were sown, he believes by O’Sullivan.  

There had been a serious amount of work put into the Pel-Air ‘briefing’ research - condensed and refined into a neat ten page pile. – All valid; just not presented. “Why not”? you ask. “No point” rasps TOM – when I asked. He went on to explain that in his opinion, O’Sullivan was simply not interested in Pel-Air and was dismissive of any statement made without ‘written’ iron clad evidence supporting even the introductory part of the ‘briefing’. When Pel-Air did get a mention, the discourse was interrupted by O’Sullivan and the team were never really allowed to get ‘in stride’. Certainly the Pel-Air briefing was never delivered. “Wasted time, effort and money” say’s TOM, as the first pint vanished before my eyes; “estimates will be a fiasco”. We all waited for Monday’s session – I now owe P7 many more pints; spot on call.

The serious student will need to suffer through the whole video series a few times. On the first viewing, concentrate only on the O’Sullivan performance. Put the ATSB session aside for later this week, watch the O’Sullivan during the CASA session. The PAIN network has.

Opinions as to motive are divided; but, three important questions begging answers remain:-

1) Why did O’Sullivan persist in interrupting and taking over Rex Patricks line of questioning? Every time Patrick attempted to develop an argument O’Sullivan disrupted and diverted. Actively preventing examination and; importantly, expansion of valid points. The only saving grace is that Patrick managed to get it all ‘on-the-record’. Well done that man.

2) Given the O’Sullivan predisposition for ‘evidence’ one must question why this was not applied to both ATSB and CASA. Particularly to CASA. O’Sullivan allowed some highly suspect answers to slip by, without demanding the ‘supporting evidence’. Had he done so then some of the more outrageous ‘stretched’ truth could have been clinically disseminated. Alas.

3) Given the O’Sullivan oft stated claims to being a police officer, insurance investigator and crack accident investigator; one has to ask, where were those ‘skills’ last Monday?

Ask any farmer what he’d do discovering a bunch of foxes in his chook shed. D’ya reckon he’d open the door to let ‘em out and give 'em one for the road as he waived ‘em a fond goodbye. Yeah, right, sure he would.

Well children, we shall simply have to buckle down and do O’Sullivan’s work for him, discover the facts and blast every faery story told last Monday. Perhaps someone, somewhere, one fine day will change something for the better– maybe, perhaps.

We shall begin at the beginning, the ATSB obfuscation next up, for that was almost as slippery as the CASA spun yarn.

And so we begin. Hopefully my ‘sensa'umour’ will return during the process.

Toot-MTF -toot.
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Questions, from the man at the back of the room.





The man at the back of the room was introduced to us way back, by the immortal ‘Heff. Never named, but Heff knew he was there, always ready to ask a pertinent question. We shall name him Joe Q and pretend he was there in the committee room on Monday, Feb 26, for the Estimates session.

Hood - "We're very cognisant of the fact of the history. Obviously, the first time round, it led to a Senate inquiry, which led to David Forsyth's regulatory and safety review of ATSB and CASA and to a review of the ATSB's methodologies by the Transport Safety Board of Canada. "

Joe Q.- Does HVH consider the first Pel-Air inquiry as ‘past history’ ;or, does he believe that there should be a full inquiry, in the present day, into the disgraceful performance of both ATSB and CASA?

Joe Q.- Is the HVH ‘cognisant’ of the costs involved in the a senate Inquiry, plus the Forsyth Review, plus the Canadian TSBC review?

Joe Q.- What action has the HVH taken to assure the committee that the Pel-Air debacle cannot be repeated; and provide the committee with a copy of those measures?

Hood - "It reopened investigation of where we went back to Norfolk Island and recovered the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder, at the cost of some $500,000 to $600,000."

Joe Q.- Can the ATSB explain why the ‘Black boxes’ were not recovered during the initial investigation at a significantly less cost, as required by Annexe 13?

Hood – “And then, of course, the reopened report includes an additional 30 interviews et cetera the second time round.”

Joe Q.- Which begs the question, why were these interviews not conducted the first time around?

Hood – “So we went to great pains to have a look at the whole chain of events, from regulatory oversight to the ownership of the company and the processes and procedures in the company and then, of course, to the individual factors.”

Joe Q.- Could HVH explain why it took the inquiry and review mentioned above to force the ATSB to take ‘great pains’ and do it’s job properly, the first time.

Hood – “So we think it's a thorough report.”

Joe Q.- “Well, we don’t; and wonder when the ATSB is going to offer an apology to the tax payer, he industry and the Senate Committee, for the appalling cost and embarrassment the first report created?

Well, we shall leave Joe-Q at the end of the HVH platitudes, watching as the Pel-Air funeral proceeds apace; with the gravediggers leaning on their shovels, hoping it’s all over before the rain starts.

MTF? – bet on it.

Toot – toot.
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