The ATSB interim report on the ditching of a Pel-Air medivac flight at Norfolk Island at night on November 18 left two passengers, two medical staff and two pilots struggling in the dark in a rapidly flooding jet, with one reporting he or she had to swim upwards to reach the surface of the sea.

It also hangs CASA, the air safety regulator, out to dry, by pointing out that the jet was not required to carry enough fuel to reach an alternate airport if the jet was unable to land there on a refueling stop on its way from Apia to Melbourne.

CASA insisted that this was a legal requirement and is conducting its own incomplete investigation into the ditching, and into other matters related to Pel-Air’s owner, REX, which operates scheduled country air services.

A more detailed report will appear in the Crikey subscriber email bulletin this afternoon, followed by a full report here.

(Visited 5 times, 1 visits today)