Uplink ALPA - The Voice of Aviation

The New Zealand Air Line Pilots' Association Newsletter. As of April 2020 Uplink ALPA is a 6-monthly publication.

New Zealand News

New lobby group to tackle airport fees, taxes and infrastructure reform

Australia and New Zealand’s major airlines have announced the establishment of a new industry group that they say will advocate and pursue reform on public policy issues that impact the aviation sector and broader economy in the region. 

Airlines for Australia and New Zealand (A4ANZ) will enable Air New Zealand, the Qantas Group, Regional Express Holdings and the Virgin Australia Group to contribute to the policy debate on “issues that affect all Australian and New Zealand travellers, including those relating to airports, taxation and fees, access to efficient infrastructure and broader regulatory reform,”  A4ANZ’s press announcement said. 

Professor Graeme Samuel AC, former Chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, has been appointed the lobby group’s independent Chair. Samuel’s  professional career has spanned senior roles in law, investment banking and public service. The A4ANZ Board includes a representative from each member airline, as well as the independent Chair, to oversee the management of the industry group while they search for a CEO in the coming months.

The group will be funded by its members and will represent the interests of Air New Zealand, Jetstar, Qantas, Regional Express (Rex), Tigerair Australia and Virgin Australia.

Read Air New Zealand’s release > 

Read the ATW story >

Lasers remain a nationwide aviation threat

Police have confirmed that lasers were pointed at two commercial aircraft as they approached Palmerston North Airport on the evening of Friday, March 10, this year.

Senior Sergeant Nathan Davis told the New Zealand Herald that the first report was made at 9pm, when a laser was said to have been pointed at an aircraft from in or around Otaki Pl, in Westbrook.

The second was reported at 9.35pm, when the laser was thought to have come from a vehicle on Clutha Pl or Robinson Cres, in Highbury, Davis said.

"Police spoke to a man but no arrests were made."

In December 2016, a Christchurch man who endangered passenger aircraft with a high-powered laser pointer was given a 10-week custodial sentence.

There has since been a reported laser-pointing event at Wellington International Airport in January, where a laser strike was aimed at a Singapore Airlines plane.

Speaking to media at the time, NZALPA President Tim Robinson said that NZALPA had been sending the message to both regulatory authorities and the judiciary that custodial sentences could be a real deterrent to stop this kind of behaviour and actions that could quickly turn deadly.

Read the full story > 

Airways to replace air traffic management system with $58m upgrade

Airways New Zealand has announced that it will replace its current air traffic management (ATM) platforms in a $58m upgrade project over the next four years.

In a press statement Airways said that, following a full procurement process, it had awarded a contract to global science and technology company Leidos to collaborate on software development. 

The Leidos Skyline X system will replace Airways’ two existing ATM platforms which were installed between 2000 and 2003 and are nearing the end of their useful lives. The system is expected to become operational in New Zealand’s domestic airspace in 2020 and in oceanic airspace in 2021.

Airways Chief Operating Officer, Pauline Lamb said that the new system will allow Airways to implement a new operating model and utilise recent advances in tools to optimise the air traffic system and staff deployment. The aim is to deliver enhanced safety and tangible benefits to airline and airport customers in the long term. 

The alternative model includes operating from two centres to provide greater resilience, and standardising air traffic control functions to improve operational flexibility.

Read Airways New Zealand’s full release >

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