Safety checks at Top End aerodromes

Residents of communities in northern Queensland and the Torres Strait may see an aircraft flying unusually low this week as the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) carries out important flight path safety checks.

A windsock on a scrubby outback field, highlighted against the sky

The checks are being conducted by CASA to make sure instrument procedure flight paths at various aerodromes operate safely.

CASA regulations require that the approach procedures are checked every three years to confirm their ongoing safety.

The checks will be carried out from Monday 8 August at the following aerodromes:

Date Aerodromes
8 August
  • Cloncurry
  • Mount Isa
9 August
  • Century Mine
  • Doomadgee
  • Mornington Island
  • Burketown
10 August
  • Normanton
  • Kowamanya
  • Pormpuraaw
  • Aurijkun
  • Weipa
11 August
  • Northern Peninsula
  • Yorke Island
  • Saibai Island
  • Horn Island
12 August
  • Lockhart River
  • Coen
  • Cooktown

A twin-engine Cessna Conquest will be used to carry out the safety checks within an area up to 40 kilometres from an aerodrome.

Low-level flying is an essential part of the safety exercise, with the aircraft down as low as several hundred feet at times.

Local residents may notice an uncommon flying pattern, but this is to make sure obstacles are accurately marked on charts and no new obstacles exist. Obstacles can be towers, trees, masts or buildings that can be a danger to aircraft.

If poor weather or other factors do not allow the safety checks to go ahead on the planned days, they will be carried out as soon as possible.


Media contact

CASA Media
0419 296 446
Reference number:

Online version available at:
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