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First this week’s #SBG: But, there’s hole in the bucket Dear Liza.

Apologies one link is causing a problem with all, can’t seem to resolve it.

Chronic Snoozer – PPrune – “Overnight/yesterday there were a raft of Head Office NOTAMs advising of various closures and operating restrictions due to Airservices. Restrictions ranged from “relevant approval from operating authority” and “access authority” required to “limited SIS provided” and “expect delay for clearance” alongside “pilots considering operating IFR in class G airspace shall contact Airservices by telephone” and “prior to operating in the TRA, pilots must obtain a briefing on contingency procedures from Airservices”.

“Sometimes TIBA procedures are in force, sometimes not. Times vary from 40 minute periods to 6 hours stretches. Amongst others, Darwin, Gold Coast, Cairns, Ballina and Brisbane Centre were affected. A “helpful” contingency map address is put in the NOTAMs to alleviate any fears /s. One NOTAM listed no fewer than 75 air routes affected by the outage.” I’m not sure what pilots are supposed to make of this fruit salad of airspace and procedures. I wonder if airlines can expect a reduction in enroute and navigation charges seeing as limited to no services are being provided.”

Gentle asks “WHO” will fix our leaky ASA bucket? Bloody good question – Fair question, one to which I cannot supply a definitive answer; but that there is a hole in the bucket is beyond doubt.

Gentle – “150 dead when an RPT jet collides with another…many very intelligent people (i.e. experienced RPT pilots and controllers) on the other PRU think still nothing would happen…I agree.” 

Hard to disagree; and the speed of ‘blame avoidance’ will make your eyes water. The rhetoric and parcel passing to date from ASA/ CASA leaves little room for doubt about that. Look at the responses so far – rather than state a solution of some sort; the immediate reach for ‘legal’ justification and blame shifting says it all. The notion that it will be an aircrew fault is deeply entrenched – see and avoid – yeah right..

However, we can try to field some candidates who ‘should’ be able, at very least, to make a fist of trying to undo their handiwork. The top dogs of the agencies are paid handsomely to manage their respective autonomous departments. The air traffic system is linked to the CASA system; seems to me that an afternoon spent (urgently) ‘discussing’ the situation and work shopping remedies would not be too big an ask – all things considered. The ‘legal’ self protection side appears, to a layman, as being pretty well sewn up, and working for them just fine. Which leaves the application and operational side to ‘consider’. How hard can it be to identify the ‘serious’ risk, moderate risk and low risk areas and develop short, medium and long term ‘fixes’ for all areas. Ain’t that what they are supposed to be doing; anyway – managing; not ducking, weaving and reaching for legal justification? Now here I could be in error; but, I believe that when it comes to ICAO compliance and holding the ‘whip hand’ the Department can say jump and the frogs only need to know how high, perhaps they could issue the ‘sort it now, now’ edict. Whatever happens, IMO the first thing needed is an acknowledgement that in some areas there exists a problem or two; then present a remedy, with explanation and future steps, time lined and tied to a person responsible. (Unthinkable I know).

“We have now sunk to a depth at which restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men.”

Maybe an in cloud, at night, in icing on descent experience of an eerie green glow and strobe flash at close quarters would let them see just how quickly and easily it can all turn into bloody rags and charred remains. Never did find out if that aircraft was climbing or descending – but the driver was wearing green socks. So apart from that and not being privy to anything other than REPCON, ATSB reports and the general (Pub) information; the solutions remain firmly beyond both my remit and pay grade.

“A resolution to avoid an evil is seldom framed till the evil is so far advanced as to make avoidance impossible.”

Item next:-

Wombat “As for centralisation and decentralisation; bureaucrats have played this game for at least 2000 years. The change is both meaningless and pointless. Those expelled from Canberra will feel aggrieved because their “customer” is Spence, the Board and the Minister -those are the people they need to be close to if they want advancement. The last thing bureaucrats want to do is have to talk to the peasants at the outstations”.

Aye, and that there was ‘scandal’ swept under the financial carpet when McCormick closed the field offices; rents paid up for years to come – left vacant. Huge sums expended and IMO to the great detriment of ‘safety’ and operational compliance. Back when the earth was soft and the sky was misty, ‘we’ – from hanger rat to owner/operator knew, up close and personal the CASA officers (DCA back then). You did not take liberties and they were qualified, competent folk for the most part. One could with a little patience seek and be granted an audience and have matters explained in a way that made sense. Of course that was in the days when the Air Navigation Orders (ANO) were ‘live’ and were almost 100% ICAO compliant. “No legal head of power” howled a new blood and the fate of the ANO’s was sealed. To this day, using the ANO as a base block for compliance is still a good starting place (but I digress). Now CASA is moving house again; Gods alone know the sums involved, but that ain’t the real cost. The cost is in faith, trust and reliability of service; perhaps regaining that, rather than shuffling the bodies around should be the focus of ‘movement’.

No matter, we have finally figured out why ‘Vertiports’ (a.k.a. Heliports) have become Pup Spence’s distraction de jour. It is all for aeronautical sign post launch don’t ya know.  – A drone clutching a ‘Caution traffic ahead’ flashing sign or “Get your clearance HERE” or; call 118.35 now to order your big Mac for your arrival: – Oh yes, they will generate revenue through advertising. Imagine a drone popping up by the cockpit window flashing a sign – “Caution Tall buildings exist on the runway centre line Go-around risky, take off scary – sponsored by your friendly DFO impinging on centre runway. Ayup, wonder how we can get a contract to build a Vertiport close to an airway? Risk management CASA style – nothing like it ever seen before; and-(hopefully) – never again).

“Some score of members of the High Court of Chancery bar ought to be — as here they are — mistily engaged in one of the ten thousand stages of an endless cause, tripping one another up on slippery precedents, groping knee-deep in technicalities, running their goat-hair and horse-hair warded heads against walls of words, and making a pretence of equity with serious faces ….”

It is considered in some circles most un gentlemanly to taunt a useful idiot. The proviso being that the idiot is of some actual use. In our long years together, the redoubtable P2 has researched and analysed many of the ATSB reports – the positive, useful, helpful and believable may be plotted on a graph axis- the wittering and rubbish plotted on t’other. On balance and fairness the downward leg has been in a steady decline for a good while now– just a steady ‘slump’ toward the bottom, while the useful line has maintained a pretty constant low median. Well, it did until the ‘Attributive Popinjay’ hopped into the Kangaroo infested Cantberra swamp and got his picture in the paper. What may be attributed to Popinjay is the woeful state of ATSB reporting since he rescued that innocent Joey (against it’s will) taking its morning bath. More quality, timely ATSB reporting is needed (they can do it) : less useful idiot dragging ’em down with waffle and spouting puerile rubbish in the media.. 

“Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am – not stuck in the middle, but hovering above the entire farcical spectrum, weeping as I behold my fellow man’s devotion to political illusion and self-destruction.”

But – Well done the Repcon crew – Bravo!..(So nice to be able to say that). Bravo and well done (much better)….For the first time in history P2 has gifted a Choc Frog to a REPCON; this one – HERE – that now joins the elite file; keeping company with the NTSB and the AIB best. Going to be lonesome in there – the others have many, many Choc Frog wrappers – but nice to see ATSB (with industry help) finally getting their first.

There are solutions; problem solvers exist, what seems to be lacking is an admission that we have dug ourselves into a deep, confused hole and cannot find an exit. Yet the most obvious solution has been provided and is available – the FAA/NZ ICAO compliant rule set and a willingness to accept that there are real life problems within and do something positive rather than prevaricate and hide behind esoteric law and live in denial. As matters stand, I doubt even a smoking hole will ring the changes; the last one at Essendon has waited almost seven years for the obvious to be examined. Good enough? Value for money? Improved ‘safety’? Oh, I think not. Perhaps a mass protest and media coverage would turn the trick – fat chance right..


Next from Senate Estimates: Budget Estimates: Popinjay & AMSA dodge Senate Estimates – WTD??

Then from the Airports forum: CM’s Aviation Fairytale; & miniscule asks for more info on YMMB MP??

Then from AOPA Oz: AOPA Oz – The marketing of Commonwealth Airports contrary to the Airports Act??

And from BITN: By Bell, Book and Candle. 

(PelAir Senate Inquiry 10th Anniversary 23/05/23)

Then from ‘the sexual life of a camel’: CASA AVMAD Fiji jaunt to indoctrinate future PASO Nation DAMEs?? 

And from ‘Proof of ATSB delays’: Number 18. from the list completed?? 

Next from the search 4 IP: Juan Browne review of AO-2023-008 prelim etc. – ??

And from a ‘Gold Star Plug: Albo extends ADSB rebate program! 

Plus from a Noble Art: GlenB embuggerance update: 16/05/23

Finally from the ‘Su_Spence Saga’:  Pup_Spence dodges a legal hand grenade with Firefighter widow court case??

MTF…P2 🙄