• Rex Patrick of the Centre Alliance. (still from APH feed)
    Rex Patrick of the Centre Alliance. (still from APH feed)

Centre Alliance senator Rex Patrick has indicated that the party will next week move to disallow the Civil Aviation Safety Authority's new regulations on community service flights (CSF).

Last week CASA said they would introduce new restrictions on pilots that flew for organisations such as Angel Flight, where the passengers were being flown to or from non-urgent medical appointments.

The regulations were tabled in parliament last Thursday, but Centre Alliance MP Rebekha Sharkie will move a disallowance motion in the House of Representatives this week, and Senator Patrick will do the same in the Senate when it resumes in April.

"CASA is trying to fix something that isn't broken," Senator Patrick said. "It has acknowledged that while there have been two recent accidents with community service flights, neither of them would have been avoided if these new regulations were in place."

"This red-tape growth has served to kill off general aviation over the past decade. General aviation is an essential service for regional and remote areas and is the breeding ground for airline pilots. Australian airlines are already suffering from pilot shortages, these new regulations will only add to the shortage.

"CASA is an organisation that sadly seems to pride itself in the amount of regulation it imposes on pilots and aircraft operators, rather than working in partnership with industry to achieve safety outcomes."

The Centre Alliance also said they believed that CASA rushed the regulations without giving the industry a chance to workshop the changes, and that a risk analysis should have been done.

Senator Patrick initially said that CASA would be made to answer question in the Senate Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport (RRAT) estimates sessions this week.

CASA was released from its scheduled hearing session on Monday without being called, but the committee may recall them this Friday.

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