Airport Advisory Committee
To be held on
Tuesday 1 May 2018
Cnr Baylis and Morrow Streets,
Wagga Wagga NSW 2650
PO Box 20, Wagga Wagga
Phone: 1300 292 442
Fax: 02 6926 9199
Airport Advisory Committee AGENDA AND BUSINESS PAPER
Tuesday 1 May 2018
ORDER OF BUSINESS:
CLAUSE PRECIS PAGE
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY 2
Confirmation of Minutes 2
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Reports from Staff
RP-1 PROTECTION OF AIRSPACE - AVIATION NOISE SENSITIVE AREAS 2
QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE
CONF-1 Out of Session - Budget and Financial Information 3
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY
Confirmation of Minutes
CM-1 Airport Advisory Committee Minutes - 27 March 2018
That the Minutes of the proceedings of the Airport Advisory Committee Meeting held on 27 March 2018 be confirmed as a true and accurate record.
Minutes - Meeting held 27 March 2018
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
RP-1 PROTECTION OF AIRSPACE - AVIATION NOISE SENSITIVE AREAS
Author: Leon Burger
Director: Caroline Angel
The aim of this report is to consider options for reducing and managing aviation noise pollution over the residential areas adjacent to the Wagga Wagga Airport within the broader National Airports Safeguarding Framework, and as is defined within the roles and responsibilities of Local Governments in the Protection of Airspace.
That the Committee:
a note the contents of this report
b note Council’s role and responsibilities in the protection of airspace under the National Airports Safeguarding Framework
c note Council’s duty of care to minimise aviation related noise pollution over noise sensitive areas
d consider the options detailed in the body of this report, and provide feedback to Council by the 30 May 2018, in preparation for a report be presented to Council recommending an option
NATIONAL AIRPORTS SAFEGUARDING FRAMEWORK
Legislative controls have been implemented at national, state and local government levels to manage airspace across Australian airports. Nationally, the primary legal mechanism to manage airspace across Australian airports is contained within the Airports Act 1996 and the Airports (Protection of Airspace) Regulations 1996.
The purpose of the National Airports Safeguarding Framework (the Safeguarding Framework) is to enhance the current and future safety, viability and growth of aviation operations at Australian airports refer Attachment 1.
The complex nature of determining and managing the airspace around airports results in involvement from many organisations and groups. All levels of government, including agencies such as Airservices Australia and CASA, airport operators and airlines each has a role in the protection of airspace through:
· the implementation of best practice in relation to land use assessment and decision making in the vicinity of airports;
· assurance of community safety and amenity near airports;
· better understanding and recognition of aviation safety requirements and aircraft noise impacts in land use and related planning decisions;
· the provision of greater certainty and clarity for developers and land owners;
· improvements to regulatory certainty and efficiency; and
· the publication and dissemination of information on best practice in land use and related planning that supports the safe and efficient operation of airports.
In acknowledgement of its role and responsibilities under the Safeguarding Framework the current review and development of the City’s strategic Development Control Plan addresses all the elements as identified in the Safeguarding Framework. This is aimed at enhancing the current and future safety, viability and growth of aviation operations at Wagga Wagga Airport.
However, this will not change the existing development approvals already granted and mostly executed, nor will it change the fact that there are currently substantial residential housing within the suburbs of Forest Hill and Brunslea Park whose residents are already exposed to aviation noise generated by the presence of the Wagga Wagga Airport – refer Attachment 2.
AVIATION NOISE COMPLAINTS
On 27 March 2017 a complaint concerning aircraft noise over Forrest Hill and Brunslea Park was received from a local resident. Aircraft traffic over these areas are mainly from circuit traffic when runway (RWY) 05 is in use. Even though RWY 12 (grass) is sometimes used, the frequency is so low as to be negligible. Both these runways have standard left-hand circuits orientated towards the north of the airport. Circuits on RWYs 23 and 30, although also left-hand circuits, are orientated towards the south of the airfield over sparsely populated agricultural land. Details of the circuit are at Attachment 3.
In his submission the complainant quoted frequencies and intensity of training aircraft over the residential areas that were in significant contrast to official statistics, and requested Council to consider changing the shape, displacement, or direction of the circuit over the residential areas.
The complainant addressed his concerns to members of Council, the local Member of Parliament, the Australian Airline Pilot Academy (AAPA), Airservices Australia (ASA), and the Aviation Noise Ombudsman (ANO). He questioned the logic of why development approvals were granted for residential developments in Brunslea Park, in close proximity to the airport. Council’s Development Section advised him that approvals of such applications were granted in 1995/6 based on the existing and forecasted noise levels, and in accordance with Australian Standards at that time. A new approach towards aircraft noise pollution was introduced to be considered in developments near airports, and no further development applications within the immediate area of the airport will be considered. However, that would not change the existing development approvals already granted, and mostly executed, or the established residential properties near the airport.
Correspondence have been exchanged with AAPA, ASA, ANO, the Office of Airspace Regulation (OAR), and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Safety Assurance Branch towards finding an outcome that will address the concerns of local resident, with minimum impact on flying operations.
In recognition of Council’s role and responsibilities within the Safeguarding Framework, and its duty of care towards all residence of the City of Wagga Wagga, the following options have been considered in reducing noise pollution over residential areas adjacent to the airport:
Take No Action. This option will not resolve existing or future noise pollution or noise complaint issues associated with aviation activities generated by the Wagga Wagga Airport, nor will it meet Council’s obligations towards its community. This options is therefore not considered.
Changing the Shape of Circuits. Standard circuit patterns are rectangular in shape, centred along a specific runway. This shape allows for all aircraft to be orientated along a similar flightpath, with 90⁰ angled turns around the circuit, and being able to see the runway and different sections of the circuit easily. The displacement from the runway along the different sections of the circuit also offers pilots an opportunity to safely reach the runway in the event of an emergency within the circuit.
Changing the shape of a circuit, as was suggested by the resident, is not considered as that does not comply with Civil Aviation Safety Regulations (CASR) s.166A. It will furthermore displace aircraft in the various sections of the circuit out further from the runway, and outside safe gliding distance of the airfield in the event of an airborne emergency.
Displaced Circuits. Displacing any of the crosswind, downwind or baseleg sections of a circuit to avoid built-up areas will equally displace aircraft outside safe gliding distance of the airfield, as in the option above. This option is therefore not considered, essentially for the same safety reasons as changing the shape of the circuit
Changing Circuit Direction. Standard traffic circuits are flown as left-hand circuits – primarily due to the fact that the pilot in command of virtually all fixed-wing aircraft in the world is seated in the left-hand seat of the cockpit. In flying a left-hand circuit, that pilot will always have the runway visual on his/her left-hand side.
Students under flying training are instructed in left-hand circuits as standard practice. However, it is inevitable that any pilot, students included, will need to fly right-hand circuits at some point in time. This is often require by, but not exclusive to, the following:
· Parallel Runways; where counter-flow circuits are essential.
· Right-hand circuits are required due to geographical limitations.
· Right-hand circuits are required to avoid noise sensitive areas.
· Temporary changes of circuit direction due to special events or other activities.
It is possible to change the circuit patterns for RWYs 05 and 12 to right-hand circuits to avoid high frequency circuit traffic over the residential areas to the north of the airport.
However, the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) conducts helicopter training at Wagga Wagga Airport on an average of three occasions per year, for around 6 weeks at a time. This training is conducted out of the helicopter lanes to the south of the intersection of the main and grass runways, up to a height of 1,000ft above ground level (AGL). Standard circuit height helicopters and micro-light aircraft is 500ft AGL, for piston/propeller driven aircraft it is at 1,000ft AGL, and jet and turbo-prop traffic at 1,500ft AGL.
During the periods of intensive helicopter training there exists a significant risk of conflict between those helicopters and other traffic in left-hand circuits off RWYs 23 and 30 – refer Attachment 3.
During these training sessions, the circuits off RWYs 23 and 30 are changed to right-hand circuits through the issuing of a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM), based on a standing publication of local traffic rules within the Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP) and the En Route Supplement Australia (ERSA). All operators into and out of Wagga Wagga Airport has to change the circuit orientation on those runways to right-hand circuits during the training periods - local flying training operations included. To date there are no recorded incidents of any safety issues arising from the changes to right-hand circuits, while the increased traffic over the residential areas obviously resulted in an increase in aviation noise.
If the circuits off RWYs 05 and 12 were to be changed to right-hand circuits as standard to avoid overflying residential areas, it would require those circuits to be changed back to left-hand circuits during helicopter training. In essence, it would mean that all circuit patterns will have to be reversed during helicopter training to avoid that conflict, and all circuits are then to the north of the airport and over the residential areas.
The option of permanently changing the circuit pattern on RWYs 05 and 12 to right-hand circuit were therefore deemed to be impractical.
However, in February 2018 the RAAF confirmed that they will no longer conduct helicopter training out of Wagga Wagga Airport. It is now possible to change the circuit patterns for RWYs 05 and 12 to right-hand to facilitate a reduction of aviation noise over built-up areas.
The option of permanently changing the circuit direction on RWY 05 and 12 to right-hand circuits is considered to be the option that will provide the least amount of impact on Airport operations.
Introducing a Curfew. Currently there is no curfew imposed at Wagga Wagga Airport through which flying activities are restricted during periods of heightened noise sensitivity. The period of heightened noise sensitivity is generally accepted to be between 10:00pm and 06:00am.
Circuit training at night is an inherent element of flying training with a subsequent increase in aircraft noise during such training periods. With the earlier onset of darkness during winter times such training can commence, and therefore be concluded, early in the evenings. However, during summer times night circuit training can only commence after 08:00pm. This then requires a later session of circuit training, with the risk of it continuing into the noise sensitive period. Statistically most circuit training is completed by 10:00pm, with an average of only two flights per hour between 10:00pm and midnight. No such activities have been recorded between midnight and 06:00am.
In changing the circuit direction of RWYs 05 and 12 to right-hand circuits, all night circuit training activities and occasional other traffic movements are moved to the south of the airport and away from the adjacent residential areas.
The requirement to impose a curfew on flying activities during the periods of heightened noise sensitivity is therefore removed.
Civil Aviation Act 1988
Airports Act 1996
Airports (Protection of Airspace) Regulations 1996
National Airports Safeguarding Framework
Community Leadership and Collaboration
Objective: We have strong leadership
Outcome: We plan long term
In addition to the safety and risk assessments already conducted by the Office of Airspace Regulation and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Safety Assurance Branch, airport management is to prepare a safety assessment and environmental analysis in support of a formal Request for Change submission.
Airservices Australia – National Information and Complaints Services
Aviation Noise Ombudsman
The Office of Airspace Regulation
Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) - Safety Assurance Branch
At the Airport Safety and Security Committee (ASSC) meeting dated 13 March 2018 the aviation noise issues over the residential areas were presented to the ASSC members. At the time of drafting this report no submissions have been received.
Airspace Protection Briefing Note
The Tructh About Aircraft Noise
Wagga Wagga Airport Circuit Patterns
QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE
CONF-1 Out of Session - Budget and Financial Information
Author: Darryl Woods
Director: Caroline Angel
This report is CONFIDENTIAL in accordance with Section 10A(2) of the Local Government Act 1993, which permits the meeting to be closed to the public for business relating to the following: -
(d) (i) commercial information of a confidential nature that would, if disclosed, prejudice the commercial position of the person who supplied it.