09 April 2018

Golden Bay Glitch

A Takaka-based airline which links Golden Bay to Wellington is chartering services from rival airlines after it lost the ability to carry passengers. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said the air operator certificate of Golden Bay Air had "lapsed". Initially, a spokeswoman said the regulator had undertaken an audit but would not give details. "We're working with them to have it re-issued." Shortly after a story on the situation was published, CAA clarified that its recent contact with Golden Bay Air included a special purpose audit, which can be initiated "as a result of information received". According to documents on the CAA website, this type of audit is undertaken "to establish the cause of poor safety performance, or to identify a particular problem within an organisation". The CAA would not discuss what issues prompted the audit. "We can't comment on details of the issues we're currently working through with the company." Initially based in Wellington and called Capital Air, the airline changed its name to Golden Bay Air and relocated to Takaka in 2009. It operates two single-engine and one-twin engine Piper aircraft, with services from Takaka to Wellington, Nelson and Karamea, as well as scenic and charter flights. Golden Bay Air director, Richard Molloy, said the air certificate lapsed on March 20. "In this case we haven't finished fulfilling the requirements of that recertification process," director Richard Molloy said. Where customers had made bookings, the airlines had chartered flights from other airlines, including Picton-based Pelorus Air. "We're not operating any flights ourselves. What we're doing is that people that we've got booked, we are chartering other operators to do our work for," Molloy said. "We're working our way through it with the CAA at the moment and hope to be operating ourselves again soon." He was not aware of anyone raising concerns around safety or maintenance. The process which led to the licence lapsing was "routine", Molloy said. "This is a five-yearly event that every operator goes through. It's a routine five-yearly recertification event."

1 comment:

  1. And once again the CAA seem to be letting everyone read into it what they like by using unclear language. Shameful.