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Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee
08/02/2016
Estimates
INFRASTRUCTURE AND REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT PORTFOLIO
Australian Transport Safety Bureau

Australian Transport Safety Bureau

[22:18]

Senator XENOPHON: I go to the issue of the black box recorders or the flight data recorders in relation to the Pelair flight. Has that been obtained?

Mr Dolan : It has.

Senator XENOPHON: Are you in a position to provide to this committee a transcript or the recordings of that?

Mr Dolan : The provisions of the Transport Safety Investigation Act do not allow us to do that.

Senator XENOPHON: Can you not do that?

Mr Dolan : It is not within my power to provide that sort of information except in the form of an investigation report.

Senator XENOPHON: I go to the issue of the 22 February 2000 Bureau of Meteorology report about the reliability of Norfolk Island forecasts. Did your first report and does the subsequent report that you have been asked to do in relation to the Pelair incident take into account the fact that those matters do not appear to have been followed through by other agencies in terms of the lack of reliability on the Norfolk Island weather forecasts?

Mr Dolan : Mr Walsh is supervising the reopened investigation.

Mr Walsh : Can I clarify the question. Are we looking at the reliability or are we looking—

Senator XENOPHON: No, there was a report issued on 22 February 2000 about the reliability of Norfolk Island forecasts. It appears that certain things were not followed through. I would like to put it to your agency that it appears that down the chain there were things that were not followed through as a result of the very clear report on the lack of reliability. Was that something that was taken into account with respect of the first investigation report on the Pelair incident and also now with the second report that is being considered?

Mr Walsh : I cannot speak to the first investigation because I was not involved. In the second one, I would have to actually take it on notice.

Senator XENOPHON: Perhaps you could take that on notice in relation to the first report. I go now to the issue of the LAHSO operations. There is a report being undertaken in respect of the 5 July incident 2015. Do you have an approximate time line of when that report will be completed?

Mr Dolan : We expect that report will be complete by July this year.

Senator XENOPHON: I ask you to take on notice information I received from constituents today about go-arounds including a touch-and-go, one that occurred on the 14 December 2013, and I will refer you to the Hansard.

Mr Dolan : We have been listening to those previous exchanges.

Senator XENOPHON: And if you could also provide information relating to the incident of 22 December 2015, that JQ 710 flight. Again, I am not being critical of the pilots at all. The passengers said that they appeared to be very close calls. Could you let us know (a) whether you were aware of it and (b) whether it is being investigated.

Mr Dolan : We are not currently aware of it. They are the sorts of incidents that if there had been a serious concern we would have been aware of it and paid attention to it.

Senator XENOPHON: In relation to that first incident, where the passenger described it as a Top Gun manoeuvre to accelerate and climb sharply on 14 December 2013, if an aircraft touches the runway, as this passenger reported, and needs to take off, is that the sort of thing you would investigate?

Mr Dolan : It would depend on the nature of the report that was given to us. It is at the extreme end of a go-around. As I say, it is the sort of thing that would have got our attention, which is why I am surprised that it did not.

Senator XENOPHON: Can you please take on notice whether you were aware of these incidents and if you were not aware of them whether you are able to make inquiries through Air Services or CASA in respect to them because these matters have been brought to my attention.

Mr Dolan : Yes.