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Thursday, 1 December 1938

Mr FAIRBAIRN - I ask the Minister for Civil Aviation whether any steps have been taken to remedy a serious defect that was brought into relief in connexion with the Empire flying boat service during the recent crisis? I refer to the fact that no provision has been made for the overhauling of the engines of Empire flying boats in this country, or, in fact, anywhere this side of England. This, of course, means that in the event of war occurring, not only the Qantas Empire flying boats, but also other aircraft of a similar type, operating on this side of the Mediterranean would be of no use for either defence or civil aviation purposes in the event of the engines needing overhaul. I ask whether the Minister is taking urgent steps to arrange for engine overhauls for the flying boats in Australia?

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