*Updated with YouTube link ABC News, and possibly the commercial networks, will tonight air an inflight passenger video of a set of near collisions involving two Qantas 737s and an Emirates 777 at Melbourne Airport last July.
If as Senator Nick Xenophon reminded us in this Fairfax opinion piece, Qantas had successfully extracted a $3 billion unsecured loan from the Abbott Government early in 2014, there would have been some dramatic consequences.
One of the disturbing things about Sydney’s much needed second airport at Badgerys Creek is the unwillingness of the major parties to do anything to break the monopoly pricing situation that would arise if it becomes owned by the same interests as the existing airport.
Earlier this week the chief commissioner of the ATSB, Martin Dolan, told a Senate Estimates hearing that he had decided not to investigate a three hour radar black out at Melbourne’s main airport at Tullamarine and the nearby smaller corporate and general aviation airport at Essendon.
It’s not until one reads the angry statement of the Minister responsible for aviation, Warren Truss, in response to Nick Xenophon’s success in striking down some changes to Australian air safety rules earlier this week, that the full significance of his action becomes apparent.
Earlier this week Senator Nick Xenophon successfully prevented an inexplicable and troubling attempt to downgrade the quality of air safety inspections of airliners in this country by licensed aircraft engineers.
There is rising concern in the aviation sector that the Pel-Air accident investigation re-opening may, like some other recent reforms, be on a slippery slope leading to Australia losing its status, as well as its reputation, in matters of air safety administration.
Even if Qantas tries to ignore shareholder Xenophon tomorrow, his publishing his queries in advance means there will be no shortage of punters ready to ask them for him.
Most politicians flying on a Qantaslink or Virgin Australia turbo-prop into Canberra would be more than familiar with cramped quarters . Clive Palmer excepted, since he has his own jet.
CASA accepted a need to ground Qantas on safety grounds at the request of management in 2011 when it stranded its customers all around the world to brow beat the Labor government and Fair Work Australia. What is it doing about the current threats to fire thousands of staff?