Tauranga airline grounded

Local airline Sunair has been grounded for 10 days by the Civil Aviation Authority. File photo.

Tauranga airline Sunair has been grounded for 10 days after a complaint was made to the Civil Aviation Authority.

The nature of the complaint is not known at this stage.

Sunair co-owner Bev Power says she is unable to go into details at this time, as the investigation is ongoing.

“We are working closely with the Civil Aviation Authority to satisfy their concerns. The CEO has gone to Wellington today to attend meetings this afternoon.

“It's our view, and the view of other experienced people in the industry, the suspension of the certificate is an over-reaction to the matters being considered. The proficiency of the company's flight crew and the air worthiness of the aeroplane fleet is not in question.

“It's our hope, and belief, that our airline operation will be back flying shortly.”

In a statement, the Civil Aviation Authority says the Director of Civil Aviation has suspended Sunair Aviation Ltd's Air Operator Certificate, effective from December 6, due to serious concerns about the safety of Sunair's operation.

“The suspension is an initial 10 days suspension, however, it remains in force if the safety issues are not addressed to the satisfaction of the Director of Civil Aviation.”

The actions follows the launch of a Section 15 A investigation, which is ongoing.

“The Sunair AOC has been suspended under section 17 of the Civil Aviation Act because this operator poses an imminent and unacceptable risk to public safety.

“The suspension will result in disruption to public travel but other flight options are available on the main routes flown by Sunair. Travel to places such as Motiti Island may be affected in the short term, but it is possible another operator may fly these routes in future.”

The Authority says the suspension of Sunair's AOC is ongoing until the operator addresses the concerns that have been raised as a result of the investigation.

1 Comment


Posted on 09-12-2016 11:31 | By waiknot

If this is an overreaction the amount of damage done to the reputation of SunAir .......

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View from Tauranga Harbour - Katikati, the Kaimais, and Tutaetaka Island. Photos: Ben Haarmann.

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