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Wednesday, 3 June 1987
Page: 3945

(Question No. 5402)

Mr Moore asked the Minister for Aviation, upon notice, on 12 May 1987:

Is the Flight Service Office on Lord Howe Island to be closed after 30 June 1987; if so, what alternative arrangements have been made for (a) essential weather reporting and forecasting for pilots in the area and (b) emergency situations similar to that which occurred in May 1987 when the Flight Service Officer was on hand to confirm to a pilot in distress that his faulty undercarriage had locked into place for landing.

Mr Peter Morris —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

The actual closing date of the Flight Service Office has not been announced pending further consultation with the association representing the affected staff, however, it will occur in the near future.

(a) Weather reporting will be provided by the Bureau of Meteorology who will continue to operate their office on Lord Howe Island.

(b) Emergency situations will be handled by the Flight Service Centre at Sydney in the same manner as occurs at the many aerodromes which do not have Flight Service staff. In the case in question the advice was given by the pilot of another aircraft on the ground at Lord Howe Island.