Some Cessna 206 parachuting aircraft, including VH-FRT, had their flight control systems modified without an appropriate maintenance procedure or approval. That increased the risk of flight control obstruction.
As a result of the safety action taken by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority and the Australian Parachute Federation, aircraft operators have increased awareness of this safety issue. Consequently, the ongoing safety risk is considered acceptable.
The ATSB informed CASA about this safety issue during a meeting on 3 August 2015. In response, CASA issued airworthiness bulletin AWB 02-054 on 22 January 2016, titled Unapproved Modifications – Flight Controls, Structures and Systems, which stated:
CASA recommends that owners, operators and maintainers carry out a physical examination of their aircraft and the aircraft’s technical records to ensure:
CASA has reviewed the current AWB 02-054 referenced in the report which was released in 2015  following this event. In consideration of the information provided in this ATSB report, CASA believes this document to be appropriate in its current form without further amendment required.
APF wrote to members regarding this directive. The first correspondence was on 9 September 2015 as soon as we were made aware of the potential issue, and again on 29 January 2016 as soon as the CASA Airworthiness Bulletin was released.
The ATSB acknowledges the proactive safety action taken by CASA and the Australian Parachute Federation to address this safety issue.