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Government Seeking Comments On National Airports Safeguarding Framework


The Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development is engaging in consultation on two Draft Guidelines forming part of the National Airports Safeguarding Framework (NASF).

The NASF evolved from the work of the National Airport Safeguarding Advisory Group (NASAG). Governments agreed to the Framework in 2012, with the aim to develop a consistent approach across the country to land use planning around airports.

The two Draft Guidelines are:

  • Guideline B – Managing the Risk of Building Generated Windshear and Turbulence
  • Protecting Strategically Important Helicopter Landing Sites

The purpose of the first guideline is to provide guidance to airport operators and administrative decision makers of governments to manage the risk as the name suggests. Windshear refers to changes in wind speed and direction between two points.

The first draft guideline is particularly important because the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) recorded two serious incidents caused by building induced windshear. The incidents resulted in investigations because of passengers’ injuries. It is also important because if there is a building in the way and in the path of a crosswind, wind flows can divert. It thus raises significant safety issues.

At AvLaw Consulting, we recognise that many of our clients are affected by these guidelines. We provide advice on construction-related issues regarding buildings near airports, and have some of the best aviation construction consultants. If you have any concerns, feel free to contact us at info@avlaw.com.au

You can view the draft guideline here.

The first guideline is currently open for consultation until 31 October 2017. You can email safeguarding@infrastructure.gov.au with your responses.

The second draft guideline is equally as important. The Department recognises that emergency helipads have needed to shut down due to safety concerns from things such as nearby cranes. The draft guideline aims to apply to Helicopter Landing Sites (HLS). Note that though it will not affect all all HLS.

The helicopter draft guideline addresses a range of matters. These include wildlife strikes, helicopter noise, distracting light interfering with night operations, air turbulence and windshear. It is important to have a draft guideline for HLS because they are not subject to the same regulatory regime as aerodromes.

At AvLaw Consulting, we also have consultants specialising in HLS. We are the nominated consultant for Aluminium Offshore, a global leader in helipad and helideck design. As such we have extensive experience in all aspects of HLS.

You can view the helicopter draft guideline here. Please email us if you have questions.

The guideline is open for comments until 31 October 2017. You can email safeguarding@infrastructure.gov.au with your comments before then.

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