The operator’s risk controls did not provide assurance that the operator’s Westwind pilots would conduct adequate in-flight fuel management and related activities during flights to remote islands or isolated aerodromes. Limitations included:
The ATSB acknowledges that the operator undertook substantial safety action to address its risk controls regarding in-flight fuel management on its Westwind fleet. Although not every item in the safety issue was specifically addressed, the overall level of action substantially reduced the risk of operations to remote islands and isolated aerodromes.
On 7 December 2009, the operator issued a new Westwind 1124/1124A fuel policy and interim flight planning procedures. Following consultation with CASA, a revised policy and interim procedures was issued on 21 December 2009. The policy and procedures included:
Additional safety actions related to in-flight fuel management included:
The operator also introduced portable satellite phones for its air ambulance operations, although these would have been usable from within an aircraft in only some situations.