Qantas Passengers "dumped" at Christchurch airport after diverting from Wellington after missing curfew

drron

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I guess if there's a 30min grace period for irrops then perhaps they wanted to just squeeze it in, and diverted when they realised it wouldn't work
But at least those pilots thought of the well being of their passengers by not diverting to CHC as QF had no personnel there.
But although it could have landed at Christchurch, the pilots decided a "Qantas personnel shortage" meant passengers could not be processed there.
 

trooper

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I wonder if they considered Palmerston North instead. No curfew and they could have put pax on buses to Wellington.

Sounds like there’s more to the story. QF of all airlines, based in SYD, understand curfews.

Arranging buses for 100 people (and baggage) in Palmerston North in the middle of the night? That would be an interesting exercise...
 

Franky

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Arranging buses for 100 people (and baggage) in Palmerston North in the middle of the night? That would be an interesting exercise...
Arranging anything for 100 people at that time of night would be interesting. Events like this one are hard to overcome, but this is now 2 in a short period of time.
 
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trooper

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The words 'planning' and 'contingency' come to mind.
Could require some ability to predict the future. I doubt you could even contact any local bus companies after about 6pm.... so not sure how a delay becoming evident some hours later can be planned for... 🤔
 

jpp42

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I doubt you could even contact any local bus companies after about 6pm.... so not sure how a delay becoming evident some hours later can be planned for...

The point is that you could already have made a contract with bus companies at airports that you operate from, or reasonably would divert to. Some bus companies definitely do have processes to be reached when needed at short notice. How to do this won't be in the phone book or on their web site, but they might use an answering service for example, who will in turn follow a phone tree to reach bus company managers and/or drivers. Bus companies can make good money by charging very high rates for such on-call service.
 

RooFlyer

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Could require some ability to predict the future. I doubt you could even contact any local bus companies after about 6pm.... so not sure how a delay becoming evident some hours later can be planned for... 🤔
Predict the future? Sure let me have a go:. "Occasionally, aircraft will need to divert to an airport where they don’t usually fly to and sometimes in the middle of the night or at other inconvenient times.”

This is where planning and contingencies kick in. You know that there is a strong possibility of an aircraft arriving at a port unexpectedly at some point. Therefore you put in place a person, an agreement, a contract or whatever to look after your passengers should that occur. That doesn’t even have to be in a place like Christchurch, just someone with a phone directory of emergency contacts they can call up at short notice. All we are talking about at bare minimum is a single body standing at Christchurch Airport telling passengers what’s going to happen. The next step up would be a body or two who are actually trying to help the passengers.

Of course the big flaw in this argument is that it would take some money to do that. And we all know how Qantas would feel about spending money on the off chance it has to look after it's passengers. "Tell 'em they're dreaming." 😊😟
 
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trooper

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25 taxis (probably more given bags) or short notice bus charters .at 0100? I thought this was Palmerston North New Zealand we were talking about? 😆😆😆 (Yes..contingency planning is of course a good idea... I would however be. surprised if such arrangements were actually feasible in small places like that)
 
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Mike the P1
should have stayed at the
CHC Novotel
for $200 a night. Jucy cheaper. Chargeback to Alan

A380s could land at Wellington
Journalists....

Palmerston North
Does not have Customs and Immigration.

Qantas just wanted the plane in NZ for the next day's 6:45am departure
No, it departed for WLG the next day. The CHC 0645 departure aircraft was already positioned in CHC
Note, some or all of these flights - actually originate in NZ rather than AU as part of the Jetconnect subsidiary

additional crew
Apparently they flew in another set of crew. I suspect they used one of the crew already positioned at CHC for the delayed repositioning and the replacement crew to operate the CHC-AU flights.

for goodness sake just have someone waiting at the airport to explain to the passagers what’s going on
Yes, the airline operates into CHC arriving at 1230am.
 
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henrus

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I wonder if they considered Palmerston North instead. No curfew and they could have put pax on buses to Wellington.
Palmerston North doesn't have customs/immigration just waiting for a diverted Qantas flight (or any flight in fact). They'd only be allowed to divert there if there was a true emergency and airports like CHC or AKL were out of the question.

Currently there are only 4 designated international airports in New Zealand; Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington and Queenstown. All international flights must land at one of those four airports. There are special agreements in place for very light aircraft that cross the tasman to land at Kaitaia Airport (far North Island) when they can't make it all the way to Auckland.
 

Ade

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surprised if such arrangements were actually feasible in small places like that)
If I may, "small places" is all the more reason such arrangements must be in place. If the airline operating out of small ports have no idea how to handle such instances, I can guarantee that the customers will have no idea...
 

justinbrett

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Palmerston North doesn't have customs/immigration just waiting for a diverted Qantas flight (or any flight in fact). They'd only be allowed to divert there if there was a true emergency and airports like CHC or AKL were out of the question.

Currently there are only 4 designated international airports in New Zealand; Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington and Queenstown. All international flights must land at one of those four airports. There are special agreements in place for very light aircraft that cross the tasman to land at Kaitaia Airport (far North Island) when they can't make it all the way to Auckland.

Sure but we’re not talking about a scheduled flight. Ohakea receives frequent international flights and it’s just up the road from PMR. I’m not saying it was definitely do-able but it’s definitely not impossible.
 

AviatorInsight

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That looks like quite a late diversion decision. I wonder if there was some expectation on board that they could land after the curfew ( a fee paid if possible) but a decision came " no, divert if safe to do so").

@AviatorInsight do you have any experience in this scenario?
I don’t have any experience with international curfew, but I have tried to make curfew in SYD from BNE once before, only to get told 30secs before touchdown that curfew was now in operation and we missed it.

So, a go around was performed and the 1hr flight back to BNE was made.

The difference here was that we only missed out by 30secs. This flight departed knowing full well that they weren’t going to make it. If it was a blatantly delayed service with no hope of making curfew the flight would have been cancelled (in my experience).

Either:
a) they wanted to get people over into NZ and then “sort it out in the morning” or
b) they were hoping for a dispensation en route but didn’t get it.
 

Scr77

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Could require some ability to predict the future. I doubt you could even contact any local bus companies after about 6pm.... so not sure how a delay becoming evident some hours later can be planned for... 🤔

It‘s really not that hard when you value relationships and realise that your suppliers are as valuable as your customers. But Qantas doesn’t value either customers or suppliers.

Well before mobile phones and the Hume highway being a divided road, heck even before google, my Dad operated some 40 trucks between Melbourne and Sydney every night. Odds were that a tuck would breakdown at some point and dad would need to find a mechanic in the middle of nowhere at stupid‘o’clock. So multiple times a year dad would spend a few days wandering from Melbourne to Sydney to build these relationships so the mechanics would be happy to get out of bed.

How can Qantas and Joyce be so short sighted?
 

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