Latest news and insights from Australia’s airports

Emergency precinct bridges tyranny of distance

Australia’s top end has long been subject to the tyranny of distance when it comes to medical care but a project by Darwin International Airport is helping overcome that. The airport’s Emergency Medical Retrieval Precinct has been steadily growing since the fist stage was established in 2011 And earlier this year it added the National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre (NCCTRC) to existing tenants CareFlight and the Royal Flying Doctor Service ...

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Fulton Hogan makes safety personal

Detailed planning, a commitment to safety and collaboration with staff have helped Fulton Hogan clock up a million man hours without a lost time injury at Melbourne Airport. The impressive feat across several projects over some nine years is testament to a long commitment to safe working practices. The veteran engineering enterprise is a well-known name on Australian airports, growing from humble beginnings in 1933 to a company employing more than 7800 ...

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New ATSB guide reminds operators to respond, report, preserve

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau says there are three key words that airport personnel need to remember if tragedy strikes their facility: respond, report, preserve. ATSB chief commissioner Greg Hood says it is imperative that first responders and airport operators preserve a crash site before investigators arrive, and this means disturbing aircraft wreckage and ground scars as little as possible. It is also important that they report it as soon as possible ...

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Community the focus for Airport Safety Week

Those that have long worked in the aviation industry understand just how unique an airport community can be. Airport precincts can function like a city or town on their own, with a wide range of businesses operating in many capacities. People come and go in large numbers, creating a complex environment for the safety personnel charged with ensuring the safe passage of travellers, staff and visitors. It’s this dynamic, ever-changing environment that is ...

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Securing regional airports’ future

A senate committee report on regional airfares released last week uncovered the complexity that comes with delivering air services on a small scale. The frustration of regional residents was evident throughout the inquiry, as poor economies of scale have resulted in little competition between airlines, and less choice of when to fly and at what cost. Those same economies of scale are at the heart of the challenges faced by regional airports, ...

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Airservices plans for next generation of fire-fighting

Recently returned Airservices Australia executive Rob Porter is on a mission to modernise the nation’s aviation rescue and fire-fighting services and take them from “the Flintstones to the Jetsons”. The former general manager of Mackay Airport and deputy chair of the Australian Airports Association board returned to Airservices in January as executive general manager aviation rescue and fire fighting (ARFF), after 11 years away. One of his first acts was to issue ...

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Runway rename success is all in the details

Renaming Brisbane Airport’s soon-to-be parallel existing runway may look straight forward but as project manager Adam Tull discovered, coordinating more than 170 changes requires some detailed planning. Tull, who joined Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) in 2017 to manage the renaming project, had not previously worked in aviation, although his father was a private pilot. He had been an army engineer who had worked in Afghanistan, Timor and Papua New Guinea before joining ...

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New regulations welcome step for industry

The much-anticipated confirmation of new Part 139 Aerodrome regulations was high on the agenda at the recent Australian Airports Association (AAA) inaugural safety forum in Melbourne. About 200 people signed up for the forum, organised jointly by CASA and the AAA, and CASA Senior Standards Officer Darren Angelo said Part 139 and the manual of standards was a key area of interest for the aerodromes sector. Whilst the Part 139 changes are ...

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Drones safety the focus of new project

Eye-in-the sky drones that venture near mainland capital city airports are themselves being scrutinised by a Civil Aviation Safety Authority project underway at the moment. The authority is keen to know how many drones, or remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), are operated near airports ahead of rule changes later this year that will require all drones above 250 grams be registered. The project was launched before the recent drone problems at London’s ...

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Greg Hood: On emergency response and working with the ATSB

The aircraft is on fire, there are a number of vehicles around it and suddenly something resembling a missile streaks from the wreckage. The sobering video clip aired at this year’s Australian Airport Association national conference by Australian Transport Safety Bureau chief commissioner Greg Hood showed the unexpected hazards first responders can face at serious crashes. The 15 May 2018 accident involved an aircraft that had been conducting night circuits at Orange ...

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