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Thursday, 27 November 1986
Page: 2930


Senator TOWNLEY(9.27) —I asked a series of questions of the Department of Aviation during the Estimates committee hearings which I seek leave to incorporate in Hansard.

Leave granted.

The questions and answers read as follows-

QUESTION 1

List the aircraft owned and/or leased by the Department.

3 Fokker F28 Aircraft

Registrations

VH-ATD

VH-ATE

VH-ATG

6 Gulfstream Commander Aircraft

Registrations

VH-LTI

VH-LTJ

VH-LTK

VH-LTM

VH-LTN

VH-LTO

6 Beechcraft Bonanza Aircraft

Registrations

VH-CAB

VH-CAD

VH-CAE

VH-CAG

VH-CAQ

VH-SGS

QUESTION 2

Detail any aircraft bought or sold or proposed to be bought or sold this financial year 1986-87

No aircraft have been bought or sold

There is a proposal which is still tentative relating to the exchange of an F28 for a small jet aircraft to fulfil the practice flying function

The venture is being reappraised as to its potential financial viability in the light of fuel pricing changes, the devaluation of the Australian dollar and imminent imposition of landing charges at Commonwealth airports.

QUESTION 3

Hours planned to be flown by each aircraft type.

The flying program in broad terms for 1986-87 breaks down as follows:

F28: 2462 total flying hours

Gulfstream Aircraft: 4994 total flying hours

Bonanza Aircraft: 2810 total flying hours.

QUESTION 4

Whose rule is baggage limit? Departments?

The Air Navigation Orders do not impose any explicit limit on the amount of baggage which may be carried by passengers into an aircraft cabin. The only relevant requirement is that if standard weights for passengers are used by an airline then any hand luggage which exceeds 4 kgs must be weighed. In addition airlines must make provision for carry-on luggage to be properly restrained within the cabin.

Australian Airlines, Ansett and East West Airlines agreed recently to introduce and use a baggage measurement device which ensures that passengers take with them only items which are capable of being properly secured on board. It is the Department's view that this is an initiative to be lauded since it will minimise the possibility of injury due to unsecured baggage in the event of an accident. However, the precise limits on size used by the airlines have been determined by reference to the dimensions of overhead lockers and under-seat storage in their aircraft. The Department of Aviation had no part to play in this.

QUESTION 5

Training hours in each Departmental aircraft and also hours of training in large jet aircraft by type and where training undertaken.

(a) Departmental Aircraft 1986-87

F28-1121 hrs

G1000-3276 hrs

Bonanza-309 hrs

(b) Large jet aircraft 1986-87

B747-36 hrs-Australia

B767-48 hrs-12 hrs USA, 36 Hrs Australia

A300-24 hrs-Malaysia

B727-36 hrs-Australia

B737-36 hrs-Australia

DC9-24 hrs-Australia

Bae 146-12 hrs-Australia

QUESTION 6

Number of pilots and their grades (how many of each)?

Senior Examiners-of-Airmen (Regular Public Transport...

4

Examiners-of-Airmen (Regular Public Transport)...

17

Senior Airways Surveyors (Regular Public Transport)...

4

Airways Surveyors (Regular Public Transport)...

19

Senior Examiners-of-Airmen (General Aviation)...

10

Examiners-of-Airmen (General Aviation)...

51

Senior Airways Surveyor (General Aviation)...

2

Airways Surveyors (General Aviation)...

10

Chief Airways Surveyor (Department Flying Unit)...

1

Senior Airways Surveyor (Department Flying Unit)...

4

Airways Surveyor (Department Flying Unit)...

2

Test Pilots...

2

Flight Test Pilots...

5

Sport Aviation Inspectors...

4

QUESTION 7

Cost of loss of licence insurance and who paid to?

ANSWER

In 1985-86 the Department of Aviation paid loss of licence insurance totalling $521,278 in respect of Air Traffic Controllers ($452,169) and staff pilots ($69,109 eg Examiners of Airmen and Airways Surveyors.)

Payments to individual companies in 1985-86 were as follows:

(a) $4,004 to Aviation Mutual Insurance;

(b) $69,109 to Australian Air Pilots Mutual Benefit Funds;

(c) $83,543 to Aviation Mutual Benefit Fund;

(d) $364,622 to Minet Australia Ltd.

QUESTION 8

How much does re-grading of licences cost? (How many pilots involved?)

Only Airline Transport Pilot Licence Holders need to renew their licence by flight test. At present there are 19 Department Examiners-of-Airmen who hold this class of licence. They undertake renewal flight testing twice a year on each occasion using approximately 2 1/2 hours of aircraft time. This flying is included in the answer to question 5 and would cost approximately $6,500 for each examiner this year.

QUESTION 9

Training procedures at Bankstown to be changed following last crash?

There are no plans to change training procedures at Bankstown. It appears that the most recent crash at Bankstown may have been caused by the pilot attempting to return to the aerodrome after the engine failed. In consequence it is timely to issue a reminder to pilots of the dangers in attempting this `turn-back' procedure. This will be done by means of a Safety Promotion Bulletin which will be issued to all pilots in the near future.

QUESTION 10

Does the Department take advantage of any recycled computer paper?

ANSWER

The Department does not use recycled computer paper for its main ADP processing system, nor is it aware of any contractors available to Government Departments which supply recycled paper.

Individual user areas may decide to use the other side of paper for drafts of `non-sensitive' documents produced on local printers.

A number of user areas arrange for recycling of `non-sensitive' computer printout paper which is no longer required.

Out of date forms and stationery are sent to Koomarri for processing into small note pads.


Senator TOWNLEY —Question No. 7 in that list concerns the cost of loss of licence insurance and who it is paid to. This question relates to the loss of licence insurance in respect of examiners of airmen who have pilots licences. The insurance costs the Department of Aviation $452,000 for air traffic controllers and nearly $70,000 for staff pilots. Why does the Government carry insurance for these people when it does not carry insurance for the loss of jobs for anybody else in the Public Service? I thought it was against the philosophy of the Government to carry insurance of this type. How does the Department decide which companies it will insure with? How many people have claimed insurance under this arrangement? Have any of the funds that are carrying the insurance spoken to the Department in respect of lifting the rates because of the high rate of resignation of people within the Department?