The complex issue of CASA and confidential reporting is one of the central elements of a Senate committee enquiry which was expected to report to Parliament by the end of April 2013. The committee’s terms of reference are:
(a) the findings of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau into the ditching of VH-NGA Westwind II, operated by Pel-Air Aviation Pty Ltd, in the ocean near Norfolk Island airport on 18 November 2009.
(b) the nature of, and protocols involved in, communications between agencies and directly interested parties in an aviation accident investigation and the reporting process;
(c) the mechanisms in place to ensure recommendations from aviation accident investigations are implemented in a timely manner; and
(d) Any related matters.
This inquiry was initially scheduled to be completed by the end of November 2012, but Lee unexpected volume of input from individuals and a reluctance on the part of the CASA and ATSB to answer questions promptly has resulted in extension of the number of hearings. The most recent one was held “in camera” on Monday 18th March 2013.
ProAviation will be following and reporting on the progress of this enquiry, which many in the industry believe maybe a turning point in aviation regulatory affairs.