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CASA not supported by aviation industry

CASA not supported by aviation industry

CASA has not been supported by the aviation industry as it goes about an expensive and poorly directed “reform process”. Industry has sent numerous messages to the Minister, Heads of Departments and CASA itself without any indication of change of direction. The most obvious recent “fail to change” is Part 61, which is in such a format that the training industry is in the process of grinding to a halt.

The recent, Senator Xenophon sponsored Part 145 refusal and the Minister’s response to the Senate refusal “….as one of union interference….’ leaves the casual observer quite incredulous. Even a minor read shows that there are numerous faults of the MOS [Manual of Standards], which renders the entire process flawed.

The ASRR, Forsyth review of course did a very good job in directing the Government to how CASA [and ATSB] problems could be fixed. I believe that the ASRR document only is a work-in-progress and is a framework to build for the future.

Many believed that the ASRR report never went far enough, in view of the previous scathing ICAO/ FAA Audit of Australian aviation, when Australia had a very poor showing with almost 3000 non-compliances with ICAO requirements. Enough to knock Australia from it’s category one spot.

Thai Airlines is in a similar battle with ICAO at the moment [Ben Sandilands report] – It would indeed be interesting to see a further report on Australia now, stripping away the CASA/ATSB derived “differences”.

The current Press release: TAAAF April 2nd, 2015 takes us to the nub of the matter, with Aerial Agricultural Association of Australia; Aerostructures and Aircraft Manufacture; Australian Association of Flight Instructors; Australian Business Aviation Association; Australian Helicopter Industry Association; Australian Women Pilots’ Association; Aviation Law Association; Aviation Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul Business Association; Recreational Aviation Australia; Regional Aviation Association of Australia and Royal Federation of Aero Clubs Australia being those involved.

TAAAF released a policy paper, which shows a series of areas, which require action by the Minister, CASA and ATSB.

The gall of CASA now to request more money to finish the completely flawed process leaves one numb and incredulous.

Support must continue and the industry should continue to agitate for proper reform, not the conclusion of a flawed and extremely expensive process [already over $300m]

The helicopter Industry has just released a paper on “progress” during the past three months, which indicates areas in which poor or no progress is being made by CASA in particular, with the on-going rush to regulate the industry to a point where it cannot move any more.


Helicopters-Australia-Jan-Mar-15.pdf [see below]




The Australian Aviation Associations Forum (TAAAF) has responded to a CASA draft Cost Recovery Implementation Strategy (CRIS) by telling the regulator to tighten its belt, become more efficient and review those of its activities that contribute little to aviation safety.

“At a time when many aviation industry sectors are suffering a significant economic downturn due to the end of the mining boom, drought in two States and a multi-decade general decline in activity, all parts of the industry have had to tighten their belts and CASA’s regulatory services should not be immune” the forum says.

“On one side sits the Government’s budget predicament, Government’s red tape reduction plan, the Government direction regarding new regulations having to be cost neutral on industry and the Government’s announced adoption of most of the recommendations of the highly critical Forsyth Aviation Review”.

“In this environment it is not appropriate for CASA to propose some 90 new charges relatedto the bungled new Part 61 for pilot licensing, and to maintain complex bureaucratic systems that fail to deliver efficiency. Industry has concerns about the lack of urgency in reform and denial of the Forsyth report criticisms by a cohort of long term managers within CASA”.

“The new CASA Director of Aviation Safety and the revamped Board are clearly engaged and focused on the challenging job at hand. They should make no mistake as to industry’s hostile reception of the CRIS proposal to simply increase charges before an attempt to improve efficiency.Unfortunately, the Minister’s critical letter of expectations to CASA is still missing in action and this needs to be remedied urgently. That letter should include a clear direction for CASA to reduce costs, up to and including a reduction in staff”.

Participants in the Forum have asked Deputy Prime Minister Truss to:

  • Reject the draft Cost Recovery Implementation Strategy (CRIS),
  • Refer CASA to the Government directive that new regulations should be cost neutral,
  • Refer CASA to the Government policy on red tape reduction,
  • Direct CASA to implement the Government’s response to the Forsyth Report,
  • Include a direction in his Letter of Expectations that CASA focus on cost reduction before more cost recovery,
  • Direct CASA to establish a joint industry/CASA taskforce to review all charges and the efficiency of the systems behind them, with a view to eliminating activities and their accompanying charges where they make no contribution to safety.
Helicopter Notes:
With permission of Rob Rich:

Editor’s Ramblings
By Rob Rich
What a dilemma we face!
Are we going to lose whichever way we turn?

It is no secret the CASR Part 61 – Flight Crew Licensing legislation is having a rough time, a very turbulent post natal rejection by the family – a really ugly baby nobody can understand due to a speech impediment – odd mutterings in strange language from ComLaw website.

Do we sympathise with CASA folks who are struggling to get this unhappy child into the pram; and then finding it has unexpected warts and a disturbing tendency to bite the hands that feed it – a DNA or design problem?

In this Quarterly Report we have focussed on why the regulation of our industry will suffer if ‘advanced legislation’ is allowed to sit upon the Part 61 Instrument and MoS, which has been tasked to provide the resources of CASR Part 142 schools to allow the functioning of ATPL, MCC, multi-engine and a host of other higher level skills to be taught and tested for issue of appropriate qualifications.

We estimate the evolution of the various Part 142 schools within the Australian helicopter community will be a long road to trudge; especially in the beginning when we have to find people capable of supervising, teaching and testing all those specialised skills; in an almost foreign language.

I have asked for advice on what will happen on 30 June 2016 when the current ATO/FE people have to transition to the new rules. A read of their easily accessible manual on the CASA website explains my concerns. How does all this take place if the launch of Part 142 schools is running well behind schedule due the finalisation of the Part 61 MoS ?

But the scary bit!

Eventually CASA will have to align itself more with the protocols used by the National Skills Council of Australia. Within this organisation aviation aircrew training is managed by Transport and Logistic Skills Industry Council. As most would know CASA does not facilitate the issue of Registered Training Organisations.

An RTO applicant, wanting to train overseas students, has to comply with the current TLISC aviation training package which is based on the latest CASA MoS published by ComLaw. However, the current training package eventually expires (2016?) and will be replaced by the new Diploma of Aviation – CPL (H). But the delay in getting Part 61 MoS sorted may delay this changeover and where there is no package upon which an RTO application can be processed – no RTO approvals – no overseas students.

Part 61 – dammed if you do – dammed if you don’t!

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