“And thus I clothe my naked villainy”– AP Forum version.
Late start this morning – much to consider and read; mostly to do with Bruce Roades and his run in with at the CASA gristmill. The story begins with tragedy, a failed engine leading to an air accident, ending with a fatality. A raw day for all concerned; services swung into action and did their usual sterling work (thank you – once again); ATSB arrived ‘on-site’ and began the task of ‘investigation’. This is what we have become used to after an accident; the ATSB attempts to define what happened, why and place, when required, some form of advisory or recommendation designed to prevent a reoccurrence. The CASA often buy in, they are quite entitled to run an investigation; there are matters which they need to be across, matters of law and operational well being. So the scene is set.
With odd old ends stol’n out of holy writ;
What happened next requires some thought; no matter how you puzzle it through, you always arrive at the same conclusion – what, in the seven hells, is CASA playing at? It is an inescapable conclusion to constructive thought. The truly frightening aspect is that we have seen this type of behaviour before; it’s almost the default setting and it’s wrong. The Quadrio story is one example, the Pel-Air story another. This latest episode should, if the government don’t fail in their duty to the Australia public, be the catalyst for a radical overhaul of the CASA. Even that small part of industry which may have had some modicum of respect for the regulator must admit, CASA is completely out of all control.
And seem a saint, when most I play the devil.” ― William Shakespeare, Richard III
Look no further than the Crawford letter to Roades; a man, standing alone dares to openly challenge the might of CASA – one man, unafraid to tell it like it is. He ain’t Robinson Crusoe; nor is he telling faery stories, the difference is, he dares to speak up. His words and the CASA response have effectively cost CASA control of the industry. How can anyone trust or respect an outfit, or the men within when a letter, such as Crawford signed, with his masters consent can be sent. Roades published that letter – and his response to it, which should be framed and hung on the wall of every operations room. CASA may have legal control – but they have screwed the ‘respect’ pooch, well and truly; not to mention the credibility donkey.
It is time the Senate committee honoured the O’Sullivan pledge.
19/11/2018. CHAIR: Mr Morgan, I’m sorry but I’m going to have to wind it up there, because CASA deserve their time here to respond to some of this stuff. If you’ve got evidence of what you’ve just spoken about, you need to particularise it carefully, you need to underpin it with the physical evidence, reference it and get it to the committee.
This committee issued some 30 odd recommendation after the Pel-Air farrago; these were backed by a further 30 odd from the good Rev. Forsyth. CASA stuck a couple of band-aides on the scratches and slithered off, back to Sleepy Hollow and shredded the whole thing – “NOTHING” (he barked) changed. “Proof” calls the mob; look no further than the Roades case before you now. If I were a Senator, and I had the Mickey Bliss taken out of me by the CASA miscreants; I’d want to open the gates, hear all and every complaint and return the Mickey – in Spades, redoubled. Yet the next on the ‘no respect’ list is likely to be the O’Sofullofit committee; simply for lack of action in the face of overwhelming evidence. Time the government put up or shut up. They could start by firing the CASA front row; that would be a long stride toward recovering some credibility and a modicum of respect; for as it stands now, they are seen to be as much of the problem as CASA is.
“We cannot expect people to have respect for law and order until we teach respect to those we have entrusted to enforce those laws.” ― Hunter S. Thompson
Do not become distracted by the sad, sorry tale of the accident – it was a terrible thing, about which nothing can be done to return life or health to those who suffered, they have our sincere sympathy. We can however do something about the despicable, almost unbelievable repeat action of CASA.
Many times over the years I have offered to fly CASA FOIs into Castaway camp in an effort to engage them in constructive dialogue and critique of our operating practices. They never accepted the offer. After the accident on 10th January I offered to fly CASA FOI Mike Lewer and AWI Marshall Ross into the accident site. They declined.
To this day CASA has never visited the accident site. Its agents have made numerous false assumptions as a result of this failure to adequately research the details of their own investigation; down to not even knowing which beaches we were landing on. We used two – Aircraft Beach and the beach at Eurimbula Creek.
CASA is an authority which is not held accountable by any oversight body – unless you have very deep pockets for an appeal to the Federal Court. It has become clear to me that it has no interest in truth or justice. Its victims are guilty until proven innocent – if they can afford costly court actions. Its agents apparently feel it’s okay to tell any untruth they choose, in the interests of proving their spurious arguments and suppositions. I believe it would be fair to describe this body as an immoral and corrupt organisation that has drifted far from its initial mandate of public Safety.
I know many experienced commercial pilots feel the same way. We talk about it. Though I doubt any would dare to voice their concerns publicly, for fear of retribution from CASA. We all know of accidents and incidents that have occurred over the years and were never reported, for this reason. Commercial operators fear becoming caught up in the tangle of inept, vindictive bureaucracy CASA has become. As a result, there is no constructive two-way dialogue between it and the industry it is meant to protect. Instead of improving the safety of everyone in the industry, the reverse is happening. Safety in Australian aviation is being compromised by CASA’s arrogant culture.
CASA is continuing in its efforts to denigrate Les and me. Les feels threatened by the possibility of criminal charges, and the loss of everything he has worked for. I have already lost everything. We both feel we have been grossly abused by CASA. In light of all this I feel my only recourse is to avail myself of the court of public opinion; the only one I can afford, and where there is a probability of a fair hearing.
In the normal course of events I would’ve waited for the ATSB’s report to come out before going public with my story. But I was recently diagnosed with a tumour on the brain, complicated by leukaemia. Doctors have told me I might survive for another 2 months at best. It is important to me that my name, and Les Woodall’s, are cleared of any blame for the tragedy that occurred on the 10th January, 2017 before I die and to expose the endemic corrupt culture within CASA.
For me, the saddest consequence of CASA’s appalling mishandling of this incident is the possibility that those involved, and their families, will never know the truth. My wish is.to be available to talk to Jocelyn Spurway’s family about what happened that day, if they so desire, in an effort to give them some form of closure. While CASA continues to stonewall, this will never happen.
There is a clear pattern of deliberate embuggerance; all are aware, yet only one man dare speak of it. His rice bowl is shattered and yet he chooses to spend the little time he has left on this planet, fighting to preserve the rights of aviation folk and exposing the deep, fundamental, man made, government supported flaws in our aviation safety system.
“I am an American; free born and free bred, where I acknowledge no man as my superior, except for his own worth, or as my inferior, except for his own demerit.” ― Theodore Roosevelt
Perhaps, what is not clearly understood is the way pilots see things – in the now; not at the end of some committee meeting – but now; the threat is real, the actions immediate and positive to avoid a mess. There is a threat, a serious one and the clock is ticking. The houseboat clock sits at 23:59. Tick Tock minister; tick tock..
Pilots track their lives by the number of hours in the air, as if any other kind of time isn’t worth noting.— Michael Parfit, ‘The Corn was Two Feet Below the Wheels’,