Keeping northern Australian skies safe
In June 2009, CASA successfully executed ‘Croc Sweep’, a two-week intensive safety surveillance sweep across northern Australia, to offer air operators, pilots and maintainers end-to-end safety guidance. CASA’s inspectors continue to work with safety advisers and education specialists to inform and advise people concerning their safety obligations.
As part of Croc Sweep, four satellite office locations were also identified in Horn Island, Broome, Gove and Kununurra. These locations allow CASA to extend its surveillance reach further, on a more permanent basis, with a greater on-the-ground presence for the local operators, pilots and maintainers. The offices give CASA inspectors facilities to help them gain an even greater understanding of aviation safety standards across northern Australia.
In December 2009, the Member for Leichhardt, the Hon Jim Turnour MP officially opened the Horn Island office, which covers an area from Cape York Peninsula below Weipa north to the Papua New Guinea border.
Then in January 2010, the Parliamentary Secretary for Western and Northern Australia, the Hon Gary Gray, opened offices in Broome and Gove. The Broome office will look after Derby, Fitzroy Crossing and the oil fields out to Barrow Island, while the Gove office covers all of Arnhem Land to the Northern Territory and Queensland border.
In February 2010, the office in Kununurra was officially opened by Senator Glenn Sterle. Kununurra will have responsibility from the Kimberley’s Ord River down to the Bungle Bungles.
CASA staff work out of the satellite offices for up to two weeks per month in the cooler months of April to September, with a reduced presence in the wet season from October to March.
To further strengthen CASA’s presence in northern Australia, CASA undertook a post-implementation review of these new offices to establish the level of surveillance conducted in northern Australia, and the feasibility of establishing CASA satellite offices in other areas of Australia.