Safety concern regarding AWIS at Rockhampton
The reporter has raised a safety concern regarding the Aerodrome Weather Information Service (AWIS) only being available via telephone after tower hours.
The reporter states that with RNP (required navigation performance) approaches, a reliable QNH source within 15 minutes is required. There is also often adverse weather conditions at Rockhampton. Having to utilise the telephone to obtain the AWIS is an unnecessary increase of pilot workload, in an already high workload phase of flight, particularly for single pilot operations.
The reporter has queried why, with the volume of high capacity air transport and emergency aircraft utilising Rockhampton, the AWIS is not on a VHF frequency.
Rockhampton Aerodrome has advised the ATSB that a review has been undertaken regarding the feasibility of adding a VHF broadcasting functionality to the AWIS, and is anticipating this to be installed in 2023/24 financial year.
The ATSB did not seek comment from CASA.