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Commuter companies extend services to Wimmera and Mallee

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(Statement by the Minister for Civil Aviation, Mr. R.W. Swartz)

Victoria's two Melbourne based air commuter companies will extend regular commuter services into Wimmera and Mallee soon. They will replace Fokker Friendship services now operated by Ansett-A.N.A.

The Executive Air Services, using twin engine Aero Commander aircraft will provide daily return Warracknabeal / Essendon services Monday to Friday, ' with extra evening flights Warracknabeal/Essendon on Friday, and Essendon/Warracknabeal on Sunday.

Commuter Airlines will provide two return. Swan Hill / Essendon flights each Tuesday and Thursday, using Piaggio aircraft. However, Crnmmzter Airlines propose to extend this service to three days a week -- Monday, Wednesday, and Friday within a month.

Commuter Airlines will also provide Horsham with daily return flights Monday to Friday and a one way service Horsham/Warracknabeal/ Essendon on Saturday and Essendon/Warrack abeal/Horsham on Sunday.

The Minister for Civil Aviation, Mr. R. W. Swartz, said that both airlines will announce their timetables soon.

Mr, Swartz said today that Ansett/A.N.A. was withdrawing from the service because of the economic problem associated with operating main airline aircraft into areas whicil generated little traffic.

He added that commuter services now established in Australia had been generally accepted and pattern of operation was designed so as to fit in with normal airline services, thus giving maximum benefit to the travelling public.

Mr. Swartz said that modern light single and twin engine aircraft offered a standard of operating e fficiency and safety comparable with main line aircraft. Use of these aircraft on regular passenger services waa now readily accepted both overseas -- particularly in America - and in Australia.

Mr. Swartz said he welcomed the new services as a "significant step forward" in the development of Aviation in Victoria.


22nd March, 1968.