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Notice given 23 November 2006

2824  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to the investigation by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau of the fatal crash of the aircraft VH-LQH at Toowoomba on 27 November 2001:

(1) Was the operator’s fleet of aircraft maintained by external maintenance organisations until the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) approved a change in maintenance arrangements in early 2001.

(2) How did CASA satisfy itself that the operator was capable of conducting maintenance on its own aircraft when it issued the operator with a certificate of approval valid to September 2001.

(3) Is it the case that CASA took no action when the certificate of approval expired in September 2001 because it had been mistakenly annotated in the CASA database as being valid for 12 months.

(4) Was the certificate of approval renewed on 21 November 2001 on the basis of a telephone conversation with the operator; if so, why was the certificate of approval renewed on the basis of a telephone conversation.