RFDS invests in Maranoa, Western Downs airports
THE Royal Flying Doctor Service (Queensland Section) will invest $325,000 to enhance the capability of 36 regional aerodromes statewide, including several airstrips in the state’s south.
The funding has been made possible by the RFDS Foundation, which was established 18 months ago to manage invested funds and bequests received by the Service.
RFDS (Queensland Section) Chairman Russell Postle said the Foundation aimed to support investment in primary health care programs, aircraft, infrastructure and new technology, as well as the professional development of RFDS clinicians.
“The initial allocation of funding towards aerodrome upgrades forms part of a long-term strategy to upgrade aviation capability at regional aerodromes to better support rural, regional and remote communities,” he said.
“While the RFDS relies on funds provided by government and donors to sustain our operations, through our Foundation we are also prepared to invest back into the communities that we serve to ensure we can continue to deliver first-class aeromedical care across Queensland.”
Mr Postle said a review had been commissioned by the Flying Doctor to analyse safety and compliance standards across the network of aerodromes used by the RFDS.
“The review concluded that considerable economic benefits could be gained by procedural and system changes which we are happy to support through this allocation of funding,” he said.
“These recommendations have led to the development of the RFDS Strategic Aerodrome Initiative, which maps out where and how to improve and develop critical aerodrome infrastructure in order to improve the safety and reliability of the Service.
“The initiative outlines plans to assist aerodrome operators with attaining certification, as well as physical upgrades to runways, animal proof fencing, lighting and even instrument approaches for all weather day/night operations.”
Amongst the aerodromes to be upgraded are Dirranbandi, Gayndah, Goondiwindi, Gympie, Injune, Toowoomba, Dalby, Mitchell, Mungindi and Tara.
Mr Postle said the RFDS was investing in this work to better service the communities which the aerodromes support.
“Through this work we can either defer, reduce or delay the requirement for expensive capital improvements,” he said.
“The upgraded aerodromes will also deliver flow on benefits, allowing for broader tourism, business and trade opportunities. We are happy to help both council and government improve regional airstrips in Queensland.
“The RFDS has a proud history of providing world-class aeromedical care to rural and remote Queensland and we are committed to ensuring we can continue to service these communities well into the future.”
- Horn Island
- Julia Creek
- Palm Island