Despite being Good Friday, Chopperline (the Caloundra Airport based Helicopter Training Company) decided to conduct Helicopter Training activities over our estate. Chopperline is a signatory to the “Fly Neighbourly Agreement”. A Bellvista resident immediately sent an email off to Maroochydore Airport CEO Peter Pallot regarding this inappropriate behaviour at 7 am on Good Friday!
Below is the text of an email reply the resident received apologizing for the behaviour.
Thank you for your correspondence in regards to helicopter movements at Caloundra on Friday the 22nd April.
Peter Pallot is on Annual Leave at present and has forwarded your concerns for me to address.
In regards to the large blue helicopter with the white underside, it appears that this helicopter was in fact a Royal Australian Navy (RAN) Sea Hawk helicopter that had arrived on the Sunshine Coast to partake in the weekends ANZAC day activities, whilst on the Sunshine Coast the helicopter was involved in an educational and familiarisation exercise with the Australian Air Force Cadets who have a barracks at Caloundra aerodrome.
As far as the smaller dark blue helicopter is concerned I have spoken to Chopperline and they have confirmed that they did have a student charter at approximately 7:15 on the Friday morning, and due to weather conditions on the day they were forced to utilise Runway 12 which brings their approach for landing over the edge of the Bell Vista Stage 1 estate.
The Fly Neighbourly Agreement that is currently in place allows for aircraft to operate between the hours of 07:00 and 1900 daily and ERSA (Airservices Australia Pilots publication) states under point 5.(a) of the Noise Abatement Procedures for Caloundra Aerodrome:
“Training Circuits are permitted Mon to Sat between 0600 (local) and last light, Sun BTN 0800 (local) and last light.”
During my discussion with Chopperline, the Chief Flying Instructor did pass on the company’s apologies if they had caused any disturbance to the airports neighbours.
If you have any further questions or require additional clarification in regards to this matter, please do not hesitate to contact me at your earliest convenience