Mode Aviation
Reference No. AR2020-00031
Date reported 05 May 2020
Concern title Lack of Terminal Area Chart (TAC) for the Pilbara, WA region
Concern summary

Safety concern regarding lack of Terminal Area Chart (TAC) for the Pilbara, WA region

Industry / Operation affected Aviation: Airspace management
Concern subject type Aviation: Airspace

Reporter's concern

There are 10 airports within 150 NM, and 7 airports within an 80 by 45 NM corridor. With the exception of Paraburdoo and Newman, none of these airports have on-ground VHF ATC coverage, nor do they have reliable ADS-B coverage below approximately 6,000 ft AMSL. Despite significant traffic of high capacity regular passenger transport operations to the area, there is no TAC.

The reporter believes that the absence of a chart poses a serious threat to the safety of high-capacity aircraft due to reduced situational awareness for pilots. Charts provide relative locations and air routes into and out of close-by airports. This is vitally important information for pilots when self-segregating and for general situational awareness, especially when off-route diversions or holding are required due to inclement weather such as thunderstorms or low cloud.

Safety outcome:

The Office of Airspace Regulation (OAR) conducted a preliminary airspace review of the Pilbara region. Stakeholder feedback has reinforced the need for the TAC. The review will recommend that a TAC for the Pilbara be published no later than May 2021. The TAC was released in the November 2020 AIP SUP.

Last update 21 April 2021