The Federal Court has dismissed an application from Angel Flight to stay the Civil Aviation Safety Authority's new regulations around community service flights (CSF).
In a hearing in the Victorian District of the Federal Court on Friday and Monday, Justice Anastassiou heard arguments from both sides, eventually ruling in favour of CASA and awarding costs against Angel Flight.
Although the Federal Court is yet to make its reasons public, witnesses in the court room said the application was struck out because the court believed that CASA would not have made the ruling unless there was a safety issue.
Angel Flight is believed to have disputed the data on which CASA has based its justification for the new regulations, but the court also declined to make a ruling based on the data.
The issue is now with parliament. The Centre Alliance has already moved a Motion of Disallowance in the House of Representatives and Senator Rex Patrick has indicated he will do the same in the Senate when it sits again in April.
In the last session of Senate Estimates, Senator Patrick asked CASA to table the statistics that show Angel Flight operations are four-to-five times more likely to have an incident or accident that a regular GA private flight. The question was taken on notice.