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Notice given 10 November 2006

2657  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) Does section 30DK(4) of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 require the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) to publish details of enforceable voluntary undertakings on the Internet.

(2) Why did CASA not publish parts 1 to 9 and parts 11 to 14 of the Transair enforceable voluntary undertaking (EVU) on its website which included: the dates of audits for the years 2001 to 2006 which disclosed to CASA auditors ongoing compliance and structural problems, the details of 14 identified safety breaches, Transair’s admission that corrective action is required and the timetable for the implementation of the undertakings.

(3) Why did the details published on the CASA website identify just five undertakings by Transair when part 10 of the Transair EVU contains seven undertakings.

 

 (4) Does the CASA publication CASA New Enforcement Procedures: A Fairer and More Transparent System, contain the following advice ‘Is an EVU public? Yes. The legislation requires that CASA must publish details of EVUs on its website’.

(5) Why were all details of the EVU not published on the Internet by CASA.

(6) Did the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee recommend that an EVU scheme should be accompanied by a publicly-available register.

(7) Did the explanatory memorandum for the Civil Aviation Amendment Bill 2003 advise the Parliament that the Government’s proposed EVU scheme had been revised to take into account the above committee’s recommendations, including the publication of EVU details on the Internet.

(8) Did the explanatory memorandum also advise the Parliament that the Government’s EVU scheme was modelled on section 87B of the Trade Practices Act 1974 .

(9) Is it the case that the guide on section 87B undertakings, published by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) in August 1999, states that ‘the Commission’s view is that all s. 87B undertakings should be a matter of public record and open to public scrutiny’.

(10) Is it the case that the ACCC maintains a public register of all undertakings made under section 87B of the Trade Practices Act 1974 and publishes a copy of each signed undertaking on its website.

(11) Is the Minister satisfied that CASA has complied with section 30DK(4) of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 by failing to publish parts 1 to 9 and parts 11 to 14 of the Transair EVU and failing to publish full details of the specific undertakings contained in part 10.

2664  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to the claim by Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) spokesperson Mr Peter Gibson in the Australian newspaper report ‘Freefall to Death’ of 23 January 2006, that proposed rule changes for the entire sports aviation industry have been delayed since 1998, but CASA would make an announcement about rule changes soon:

(1) What rule changes have been under consideration since 1998.

(2) Why has the implementation of the rule changes been delayed for eight years.

(3) Can a copy be provided of all related Notices of Proposed Rule Making.

(4) When will rule changes be implemented.

(5) How many people participating in sports aviation, including: (a) skydiving (b) ultralight aviation; (c) ballooning; and (d) other sports, have died in Australia since 1998.

2668  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) What is the total cost of introducing the Civil Aviation Safety Authority Generated Minimum Equipment List (GMEL) system, by year.

 

 (2) Can the cost be disaggregated to include: (a) software adaptation; (b) project team costs; (c) trial costs; (d) payments to Transport Canada; and (e) other costs

(3) Can details of all GMEL Review Board members be provided.

2673  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to Civil Aviation Regulation 7 (CAR 7) as contained in the Civil Aviation Regulations 1988, which provides that the Director of Aviation Safety ‘may, in writing, delegate to a person all or any of CASA’s powers and functions under CAR’:

(1) Does the Director of Aviation Safety issue delegations to positions rather than persons; if so, do these delegations comply with CAR 7 which provides for delegation to ‘a person’.

(2) Does the Director of Aviation Safety ever issue unsigned delegations stamped with an electronic signature.

(3) Can a schedule showing the current functions and powers delegated under CAR 7 and the name of the person exercising that delegated power be provided: if not, why not.

2687  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—Why does the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) annual report for 2005-06 report that the highest remuneration paid to a CASA executive other than the Chief Executive Officer in the 2004-05 financial year was in the $310,000 - $324,999 band when the CASA annual report for 2004-05 reports that the highest remuneration paid to a CASA executive other than the Chief Executive Officer in the 2004-05 financial year was in the $280,000 - $289,999 band.

2697  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) Is the Minister aware that in September 2006 Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) spokesperson Mr Peter Gibson told The Australian newspaper that ‘none’ of the issues subject to the Transair enforceable voluntary undertaking (EVU) dated 4 May 2006 ‘can be linked directly’ to the tragedy at Lockhart River on 7 May 2005.

(2) What is the basis of CASA’s claim that none of the fourteen safety breaches identified in the Transair EVU can be linked to the Lockhart River crash.

2700  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to page 34 of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) annual report for 2003-04 and page 38 of the CASA annual report for 2004-05 and the answer to question on notice no. 352 (Senate Hansard , 10 May 2005, p. 271), concerning a review of the new CASA enforcement regime:

(1) Which CASA officers managed the review.

(2) Did the review conclude in May 2005.

(3) On what date was the review report presented to the CASA Chief Executive Officer, Mr Bruce Byron.

(4) What necessary changes to the enforcement regime did the review identify.

(5) What necessary amendments to the Civil Aviation Act 1988 did the review identify.

 

 (6) Can a copy of the review report be provided.

(7) On what date did Mr Byron provide a report to the Minister on the review outcomes.

(8) How did the Minister and the department consider the review.

(9) When did the Minister’s consideration of the review conclude.

(10) What changes to the enforcement regime have resulted from this consideration.

(11) What legislative amendments can be attributed to the review.

2701  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) Can a copy be provided of the Transair air operator’s certificate (AOC) BN426646-31 issued on 20 October 2005.

(2) Was this AOC current as at 4 May 2006 when Transair entered into an enforceable voluntary undertaking with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

(3) Were any Transair AOCs issued between 4 May and 17 May 2006; if so, can a copy of each AOC be provided.

(4) Can a copy be provided of the Transair AOC BN426646-33 issued on 17 May 2006.

(5) Did Transair operate on three AOCs within the space of a fortnight in May 2006; if so, can an explanation for this be provided.

2702  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) Is it the case that section 28 of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 provides that the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) may only issue an air operator’s certificate (AOC) if it is satisfied that the applicant has complied with, or is capable of complying with, the provisions of the Act, the regulations and the Civil Aviation Orders.

(2) On each occasion that CASA has issued an AOC to Transair, has CASA satisfied itself that Transair has complied with, or is capable of complying with, the provisions of the Act, the regulations and the Civil Aviation Orders.

(3) Can a list be provided of all identified occasions that Transair has not complied with the provisions of the Act, the regulations and the Civil Aviation Orders.

2705  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) (a) How many serious and imminent risk suspensions has the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) issued under section 30DC of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 ; and (b) can details be provided of each suspension, including the holder of the civil aviation authorisation and the reason for the suspension.

(2) In each case where CASA has made an application to the Federal Court of Australia under section 30DE, what has been the outcome.

 

 2707  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) Is it the case that section 28(2) of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 provides that the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) may take into account the financial position of an applicant when determining whether to issue an air operator’s certificate (AOC).

(2) What action, if any, has CASA taken to examine the financial position of Transair when issuing AOCs to this operator.

(3) Has CASA established whether Transair has maintained a satisfactory credit rating with providers of material and services, such as spare parts suppliers and external maintenance providers.

2708  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) Have ramp inspections of Transair aircraft undertaken since November 2001 revealed any problems, including fuel leaks; if so, can details be provided, including the date and the nature of each identified problem.

(2) Has the Civil Aviation Safety Authority received any complaints from airport owners since November 2001 about the condition of Transair aircraft; if so, can details provided, including the source, date and nature of each complaint.

2710  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) safety recommendation R20060002 issued on 24 January 2006 during the course of the investigation into the Lockhart River air tragedy in May 2005:

(1) Is it the case that the co-pilot of the Transair flight had not been trained in global positioning system navigation or area navigation global navigation satellite system approaches.

(2) Has the Government acted to ensure that co-pilots are required to hold an endorsement for any navigation aids being used to navigate an aircraft during flight.

2718  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) Is the Minister aware that Senator Abetz, the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services in the Senate on 6 November 2006, told the Senate on 6 November 2006 that the interim reports by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) into the Lockhart River air tragedy in May 2005 contained ‘no suggestion’ that the tragedy was due to any failure by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA).

(2) Is it the case that the ATSB has not endorsed CASA’s regulatory oversight of Transair.

(3) Is it the case that the ATSB interim factual report published on 31 August 2006 states that the investigation is ongoing and will include further work on ‘regulatory oversight of the operator’s activities, including approvals and surveillance undertaken’.

 

 (4) (a) Is the Minister aware that on 6 November 2006 Senator Abetz told the Senate that the CASA Director of Aviation Safety ‘has assured himself that there is no imminent threat which would prevent Transair flights continuing at this time’; and (b) how did the Director of Aviation Safety assure himself.

2719  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to the answer to CASA 19 asked at additional estimates in February 2006, concerning the Civil Aviation Safety Authority’s (CASA) investigation of allegations about Transair operations: Is the claim that ‘the company had an open culture and responses to the CASA investigation were cooperative and taken with a view to improving things if required’ supported by the company’s continuing non-compliance with aviation safety regulations evidenced by, the admission of fourteen breaches of safety rules in the company’s Enforceable Voluntary Undertaking dated 4 May 2006, the necessity to issue show cause notices on 14 August 2006 and 26 September 2006, and the decision to cancel the company’s air operators certificate on 24 October 2006.

2723  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to evidence by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Director of Aviation Safety, Mr Mick Toller, to the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee on 19 February 2001, that Civil Aviation Regulation 206 (CAR 206) as contained in the Civil Aviation Regulations 1988 that mandates an air operator’s certificate for any form of commercial flying training, including training in an ultralight:

(1) Does commercial flying training in an ultralight still fall within the scope of CAR 206.

(2) Do all other forms of commercial flying training in sports aviation aircraft still fall within the scope of CAR 206.

(3) Is it the case that it is still not possible to issue an exemption from CAR 206.

(4) Has CASA enforced CAR 206 in relation to commercial flying training in sports aviation aircraft; if not, why not.