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Jul 2, 2011

Tiger Airways Australia grounded by CASA

All Tiger Airways Australian division flights have been cancelled following the grounding of the airline by CASA at 2300 eastern time last night. TIGER AIRWAYS AUST

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All Tiger Airways Australian division flights have been cancelled following the grounding of the airline by CASA at 2300 eastern time last night.


The Civil Aviation Safety Authority has suspended the operations of Tiger Airways Australia Pty Ltd with immediate effect from Saturday 2 July 2011.

This action has been taken because CASA believes permitting the airline to continue to fly poses a serious and imminent risk to air safety.

The suspension of Tiger Airways Australia follows the issue of a show cause notice to the airline in March 2011.

Taking Tiger Airways Australia’s response to this show cause notice into account, CASA subsequently imposed a number of conditions on the airline’s air operator’s certificate.

These conditions required actions to improve the proficiency of Tiger Airways Australia’s pilots, improvements to pilot training and checking processes, changes to fatigue management, improvements to maintenance control and ongoing airworthiness systems and ensuring appropriately qualified people fill management and operational positions.

CASA has been closely monitoring the operations of Tiger Airways Australia throughout 2011, with surveillance undertaken at a range of locations.

Since Tiger Airways Australia was served the show cause notice there have been further events raising concerns about the airline’s ability to continue to conduct operations safely.

In the circumstances, CASA no longer has confidence in the ability of Tiger Airways Australia to satisfactorily address the safety issues that have been identified.

The suspension is in force immediately for an initial five working days, during which time CASA must apply to the Federal Court for an extension of the grounding.

If the Federal Court supports CASA’s application the court can continue the suspension for a period of time which will allow CASA to finalise investigations into the safety matters.

CASA will provide additional information on Saturday 2 July 2011.

Tiger Airways Australia has a fleet of 10 Airbus A320s with each fitted with up to 180 seats, the maximum number permitted on that type of airliner.

The grounding is unprecedented in jet airliner operations in Australia.

The preceding posts in Plane Talking provide additional information concerning the events that lead to the AOC suspension involving jets that were flown below the safe minimum altitude during night approaches to Melbourne Airport on June 7 and to Avalon Airport on Thursday, June 30.

Ben Sandilands — Editor of Plane Talking

Ben Sandilands

Editor of Plane Talking

Ben Sandilands has reported and analysed the mechanical mobility of humanity since late 1960 - the end of the age of great scheduled ocean liners and coastal steamers and the start of the jet age. He’s worked in newspapers, radio and TV in a wide range of roles as a journalist at home and abroad for 56 years, the last 18 freelance.

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11 thoughts on “Tiger Airways Australia grounded by CASA

  1. True, Quizzical – thanks for pointing out that I brought up 2 separate issues. I guess I’m just jumping up in joy because someone who has cheated me got into trouble one way or another 🙂

    Your theory of introducing competition, I understand and appreciate. Theory of cheap & mean, I also understand. But I don’t think I deserved to be swindled because I chose the cheaper option from an approved Australian business. Tiger trains its check-in staff to rip extra dollar off unsuspecting customers, clearly integrity is not part of its organisation culture – why would I not suspect it also wrongly trained its maintenance crews “unairworthiness”? Tiger cannot be trusted in anyway.

    If others up their fares due to poor or no competition from Tiger, so they should. Competition was introduced, unfortunately a dishonest provider was chosen.

    p/s – Sorry, can’t comment about the politics of CASA and ex-QF, etc.

  2. JM
    Rather mixed metaphors so to speak. While Tiger undoubtedly exists to make Jetstar seem palatable – and you chose the cheapest carrier – their behaviour re consumers is the proof that you get that for which you pay.

    The CASA action is and should be totally unrelated. But perhaps it will achieve that which you desire, in which case watch the remainder up their fares as the competition diminishes. “Unscrupulous businesses” – might be a few QF pilots and engineers could tell a tale or three. And returning to my initial comment, one ponders on how many ex QF staff are now in CASA and vice versa, not of course that one would suggest any conflict of interest within CASA despite it being at its lowest integrity ebb in my recollection 🙂

  3. YAY, today I woke up to the best news ever, finally our prayers were answered! After a lousy experience with Tiger Airways from Melbourne to Hobart last year, my family and I vouched never to travel Tiger again – so this is great news! Not only do they not follow safety rules, my experience was they do not follow fair consumer rules and nothing’s been done so far by Australian Government to tell them off – despite countless complains from the public. I am just waiting for Consumer Affair to get them soon too. Well done, CASA! About time Australia – protect your innocent people from unscrupulous business trying to operating here.

  4. Why do I have this distant memory of Ansett and the timing 🙂

    The start of the Victorian school holidays methinks and maximum impact by CASA – blow all the affected travellers, their ‘safety’ will be paramount.

    If the significant problems recently have been night flight issues perhaps a grounding for the dark hours.

    CASA is dammed if they do, dammed if they don’t but acting at this particular time indicates a serious disregard for the side effects and financial losses to the travelling public – and the impact on the other airlines who will have to pick up the slack with tired crews (but at least the CASA god-child Qantas will get a much needed extra quid).