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Thursday, 20 March 1980
Page: 934

Senator Chaney -On 27 February 1980 Senator Keeffe asked me a question without notice concerning the crash of a Beech Kingair aircraft at Sydney Airport on Thursday, 21 February 1980.

The Minister for Transport has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

In accordance with normal practice the Air Safety Investigation Branch of the Department of Transport is conducting a full investigation into the circumstances of the accident in question. This will be a detailed investigation covering all aspects of possible relevance, intended to establish the cause and contributing factors of the accident so that the knowledge gained may be employed in the Department's continuing accident prevention program.

Specific aspects mentioned by the honourable senator such as crew complement, single engine performance and the operating manuals of Beech Kingair aircraft, will be covered by the investigation.

Any matters which come to light during the progress of the investigation, which appear to be relevant to the operation of other aircraft, will be considered by the Department as they arise. The relevance of the specific accident investigation findings to other third level and commuter operations will be a matter for consideration once the investigation is concluded.

Multi-engined aircraft with a gross weight in excess of 3500 kgs, which are engaged on third level airline and commuter operations, are required to carry a flight manual, approved by the Department of Transport, which includes data concerning performance and loading of the aircraft. In addition, the Air Navigation Regulations require an aircraft operator engaging in commercial operations to provide an operations manual for the guidance of it's operations personnel. The Department of Transport may direct an operator to include particular information in the operations manual and the operator is required to provide the Department with a copy of the manual. Flight manuals or operations manuals, as appropriate, for all third level airline and commuter operations include data, such as graphs, for establishing take-off and landing criteria. Continuing compliance with these requirements by operators is monitored by appropriately qualified surveillance officers of the Department.

Finally, all documentation relevant to the crashed aircraft has been taken into the custody of the Air Safety Investigation Branch for the purpose of the investigation. In accordance with normal practice, the documentation will not be made available for public scrutiny.

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