Following the advanced release of the safety recommendation, Airservices Australia informed the ATSB of the following:
On 6 December 2018, Airservices issued a Temporary Local Instruction for Sydney requiring that the distance between successive arrivals on runway 16L and 16R [and runway 34L and 34R] increase from 4 NM to 5 NM. This instruction will be permanently incorporated into Sydney Operational Procedures (via Letter of Agreement 3183).
While this instruction was issued to reduce the likelihood of go-around and loss of separation events at Sydney, it significantly reduces the likelihood of wake turbulence events.
In addition, as it recognised that the potential for wake turbulence is more prevalent when the wind is from the north or northwest, to increase pilot awareness and caution, the following action is being taken.
- Air traffic controllers will be required to place a standard caution on the Aeronautical Terminal Information Service (ATIS). This will be documented in Local Instructions.
- A wake turbulence caution will be included in the local En Route Supplement Australia (ERSA).
Temporary Local Instructions and a Notice to Air Men (NOTAM) will be issued on 16 February 2019 as interim measures ahead of publication of the above documents (see below).
The increased distance between arrivals and improved awareness in the piloting community significantly reduces the risk of wake turbulence events at Sydney aerodrome. We will monitor wake turbulence events and pilot feedback, and intervene further if circumstances demand.
Amend Letter of Agreement 3138 as follows: TLI to be issued 16/2/19
10.3 WAKE TURBULENCE
10.3.1 Parallel Approach Limitations
When a super wake turbulence category aircraft is making an approach to a parallel runway provide wake turbulence distance separation to the adjacent runway when the aircraft making an approach to the adjacent runway has a MTOW less than 25 000kg.
10.3.2 RWY 34R Traffic Requirements
When ATIS notification of parallel wake turbulence applies, APP/DIR provide traffic information and a wake turbulence caution to aircraft on approach to 34R that will operate within the wake turbulence distance of a Heavy or Super aircraft making an approach to runway 34L.
'QFA501, TRAFFIC A380 SUPER RUNWAY LEFT 4 MILES AHEAD CAUTION WAKE TURBULANCE'
Note: This traffic advice can be combined with other traffic information requirements of Independent Visual Approaches when applicable.
This is in accordance with AIP (GEN 3.4-88)
Amend Local Instruction as follows: TLI to be issued 16/2/19
Local Instructions add a note regarding Wake Turbulence for inclusion on the ATIS.
When the wind is unfavourable as stated below. "Caution possible W/T from parallel runway operations".
Amend Local ERSA Entry as follows: NOTAM to be issued 16/2/19 then include in ERSA August publication
"Due to the nature of operations at Sydney during 34// operations with wind from the west to northwest" CAUTION Wake turbulence may exist.