AAAA says improving relationship between industry and regulator a “massive task” for incoming government

QBE has launched an aerial ag scholarship program.

The industry group representing Australia’s agriculture and firefighting pilots says the party that wins the upcoming federal election has a “massive task” ahead in building an improved relationship between the industry and the regulator.

Aerial Application Association of Australia (AAAA) chief executive Phil Hurst says his organisation stood ready to give the new government its full backing in carrying out the proposed reforms contained in the Aviation Safety Regulatory Review (ASRR), particularly in relation to the Civil Aviation Safety Authority. (CASA).

“The new Minister and the existing CASA Board will certainly have the full support of the industry in tackling the highly resistant CASA culture of ‘we know better than industry’,” Hirst said in a statement.

“Whoever the new Minister is after the election, they will have a massive task still ahead of them which may require further personnel changes if reform cannot be delivered rapidly – something supported by an industry focussed on outcomes not talk.”

CASA chief executive and director of aviation safety Mark Skidmore has embarked on an organisational overhaul in an effort to “better align CASA’s activities with our responsibilities to the aviation community”.

Recently, the aviation safety regulator has published a new timetable for changes to the nation’s aviation regulations in response to feedback from industry.

And on Friday, CASA apologised to pilots and air traffic controllers who have faced delays in obtaining an aviation medical certificate.

CASA said it had put on more staff to address the delays in processing medical certificates.

“Changes are also being made to workflow practices to improve the processing times,” CASA said in a statement.