News

Skydiving in legal tangle

John McCutcheon

THERE is no safe place for a skydiver to land on the South Grafton Airfield says a legal report prepared on behalf of the airfield managers.

The chairman of Clarence Valley Council's Section 355 committee that manages the airfield, Ken Dawes, told a council committee meeting last Tuesday there were three fundamental safety issues in the safety regulations governing parachuting operations.

  •  The drop zone must be a circle 400m across free of any hazards.
  •  The drop zone must be 600m from any populous area.
  •  The airfield runway and taxiway is considered a hazard because of the aircraft using it and must not be considered safe to land on.

Council has been investigating the risks of skydiving activities resuming at the airfield after they were suspended in July 2013.

Skydiving business Coffs City Skydivers has lobbied council to reopen the airfield since its closure.

Mr Dawes said the company had a one-year licence to operate from the airfield, which expired on June 30.

Mr Dawes commissioned Sydney barrister Darryl Warren to examine council's exposure to litigation in the event of a parachuting accident on the airfield.

His report was critical of a number of documents which council staff relied on to prepare its report to council.

These include a letter from Coffs City Skydivers, a consultants' report from Aviation Projects, aerial photographs and a letter from the Australian Parachute Federation and APF Operational Regulations covering drop zone requirements.

Mr Dawes hoped the councillors understood that the reasons behind his committee's objections to skydiving resuming at the airfield were motivated by legal and safety concerns.

The council officers' recommendation is for skydiving to resume at the airfield, subject to relevant development applications and subsequent consents. They also want Aviation Projects to supply documents backing up part of their advice and a quote for legal advice to address other items in their report.

The committee deferred making a decision on the matter to Tuesday's council meeting.

Topics:  aerodrome clarence valley council skydiving south grafton



Skin clinic swims for charity

Toby Campbell, Natalie Le Breton, Dr Mark Groves and Tanya Priest from the Yamba Skin Clinic who organised the swim to raise money for Lower Clarence Relay for Life.

Swimming fundraiser a success for Yamba Skin Clinic

WIN a fishing trip, $5000 BCF voucher and get free stuff

Want to catch one of these big fellas!? Get your name into our competition to win the ultimate fishing holiday!

WERE running a stack of reely incredible giveaways!

Strange Politics: Follow Pauline on high and low roads

No need to choose - Pauline takes the high and low roads.

Enter Pauline Hanson - the political phoenix

Local Partners

Lifeguards commended after rescuing eight at Pippi

Lifeguards Harry Fahey and Mikey Gilliman talk about their 'textbook rescue' of eight swimmers while on patrol at Pippi Beach


5 things to do this weekend

Lower Clarence Relay for Life Swim

Looking for something to do this weekend?

Puppetry of the Penis secrets revealed ahead of show

The famed Puppetry of the Penis is coming to the Sunshine Coast for shows in Noosa and Caloundra.

WARNING: This interview contains adult themes and traces of nuts

Artist program to link to gallery theme

VALUABLE STINT: Indigenous artist Karla Dickens at work in Grafton Regional Gallery's studio during her 2010 artist's residency.

Gallery encouraging indigenous artists to take up residency offer

Jennifer Aniston wants to return to TV

Jennifer Aniston is desperate to make a return to TV

Madonna hopes for election unity

Madonna hopes Donald Trump's election will "bring people together"

JK Rowling rules out Cursed Child trilogy

JK Rowling has ruled out a 'Cursed Child' movie trilogy

Buckley's chance in psychological thriller

James McAvoy and Betty Buckley in a scene from the movie Split.

Broadway veteran back on big screen with James McAvoy

Daniel MacPherson: acting’s a bit like channel surfing

Australian actor Daniel MacPherson in a scene from the American TV series APB.

THE Aussie export talks about making his mark in the US.

Shopping isn't fun if you can see dead people

Lisa Marie Woodham will be giving readings in Gladstone until Saturday January 21.

Shopping isn't fun if you can see dead people

Thousands of jobs part of $1b retirement village project

THIS YEAR: An artist impression of the new Aveo retirement village in Springfield.

Aveo Springfield unveiled this month, homes ready by July

Rates safe from land value hike

DRIVING GROWTH: The Pacific Highway upgrade has been linked to improved land values.

Figures up in latest valuer-general report

KNIFE-EDGE: The housing tightrope we now face

Even the smallest interest rate rise will be hard for some to handle.

One if five home owners at risk, according to new analysis

Historical home leaves family's hands after 75 years

SALE CONFIRMED: The Gympie Regional   Realty team which sold the Ramsey property are (back) Mel Gastigar, Dorothy Palmer and Margaret Cochrane, with (front) home seller Terri-Jayne Ramsey.

Ramsey family played a huge role in Gympie's growth.

Pat Rafter's $18m Coast home proves hot property

PAT'S PAD: The Sunshine Beach home of tennis ace Pat rafter is on the market for a record price.

"It's a record for our company and for the Sunshine Coast.''

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!