On 2 December 2019, the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee (the committee) self-referred under Standing Order 25(2)(a) an inquiry into Australia’s general aviation industry, with particular reference to aviation in regional, rural and remote Australia.
The report is broken down into six chapters. The first chapter introduces the inquiry and provides an overview of the aviation and general aviation (GA) industry in Australia, including safety concerns, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), the Civil Aviation Act 1988 and the CASR. It also provides the main findings from a number of recent reviews into the aviation sector. A brief background is also provided in relation to other agencies within the aviation safety framework and the international regulatory environment.
Chapter 2 provides information regarding improved safety in GA and the relative risks in GA.
Chapter 3 provides an overview and highlights issues of the legislative and regulatory framework which underpins GA safety in Australia.
Chapter 4 examines some of the issues identified in relation to the inquiry about the culture of CASA and its interactions with the GA industry, including the role of the Industry Complaints Commissioner.
Chapter 5 examines the issues of education and training, particularly for GA pilots and engineers, including training streams and the need for harmonisation between CASA and Australian Skills Quality Authority courses and qualifications.
Chapter 6 considers emerging airport management, ownership and cost issues which have arisen from the divestment and privatisation of regional aerodromes, as well as community concerns on these matters.