- Titles of CAD Senior Management to Change, (31 December 2000)
- UK Experts: HK Air Traffic Operation Safe, (8 December 2000)
- PLA & US Military Join CAD in Search and Rescue Exercise, (6 December 2000)
- UK Experts to Review HK Air Traffic Control System, (3 December 2000)
- CAD investigates air traffic control incident, (28 November 2000)
- Air Traffic Controllers Essential to Aviation Achievements, (22 November 2000)
- CAD Well Prepared for Safety Audit, (12 November 2000)
- Titles of CAD Senior Management to Change (10 November 2000)
- Civil Aviation (Insurance) Order (Commencement) Notice 2000, (3 November 2000)
- LegCo Members Visited CAD Facilities, (3 November 2000)
- Increased passenger and cargo services offered by airlines, (1 November 2000)
- Air Traffic Control Standards Well Maintained, (14 September 2000)
- CAD Strives to Ensure Maximum Air Safety, (14 September 2000)
- CAD Investigates Air Traffic Control Incident, (11 August 2000)
- New Aircraft Descent Procedure Reduces Noise, (9 August 2000)
- Improved Helicopter Services Between Hong Kong and Macau, (30 May 2000)
- Three-day Regional Conference on Aviation Held in Hong Kong, (24 May 2000)
- CAD Competent to Administer Flight Time Limitations Scheme, (7 April 2000)
- Aviation Industry Thoroughly Consulted on Aircrew Fatigue Rules, (5 April 2000)
- Increased passenger and cargo services offered by airlines, (25 March 2000)
- No Air Traffic Incident Reported in HK on March 6, (13 March 2000)
- Investigation into Air Traffic Control Incident of January 22 Completed, (3 March 2000)
- Hong Kong Aviation Sector Experienced Smooth Rollover to February 29, (29 February 2000)
- CAD Explains Air Traffic Control Issues, (26 January 2000)
- CAD Investigates Air Traffic Control Incident, (25 January 2000)
- Number of Daily Flights to Peak at Lunar New Year, (20 January 2000)
- Y2K: Deactivation of Y2K Contingency Plans by International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), (1 January 2000)
- Y2K: HK Aviation Sector Experienced Smooth UTC Rollover, (1 January 2000)
- Y2K: HK International Airport runs smoothly after rollover, (1 January 2000)
- Y2K:Smooth Rollover at Hong Kong International Airport, (1 January 2000)


Titles of CAD Senior Management to Change

31 December 2000

To align with the internationally accepted protocol and to properly reflect the status, duties and responsibilities of the senior management personnel of the Civil Aviation Department (CAD), the English titles of 11 directorate officers in the Department will be changed with effect from tomorrow (January 1, 2001).

Director of Civil Aviation (DCA) and Deputy Director of Civil Aviation (DDCA) will be retitled Director-General of Civil Aviation and Deputy Director-General of Civil Aviation respectively. Title of the five Assistant Directors in the Department will be changed to Assistant Director-General, while the four Deputy Air Traffic General Managers will be renamed Chief Air Traffic Control Officers.

"As the Head and Deputy Head of CAD, DCA and DDCA are the key officers representing Hong Kong in liaison with other aeronautical authorities, the International Civil Aviation Organisation and other civil aviation related agencies. In the conduct of business with these bodies, CAD's experience is that the existing post titles of DCA and DDCA do not properly reflect their status, duties and responsibilities.

"This is so because many aviation administrations use the titles 'Director-General of Civil Aviation' and 'Deputy Director-General of Civil Aviation' for their heads and deputy heads respectively, whereas the titles of Director and Deputy Director are often used for their division heads. This misrepresentation of titles affects the smooth conduct of business, such as attendance at international conferences, panel meetings and ceremonies.

"The aviation administrations of over 60 places are already headed by Directors-General of Civil Aviation. These include the more prominent ones such as the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Japan, as well as Hong Kong's neighbouring authorities including the Mainland, Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Hong Kong is an international and regional center of aviation. The adoption of the new titles will better reflect the status of Hong Kong in the international aviation community," a spokesman for the Department explained.

As for the Chinese titles of the Head and Deputy Head of CAD, they will remain the same.

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UK Experts: HK Air Traffic Operation Safe

8 December 2000

The air traffic control operation (ATC) in Hong Kong is safe and of a high standard, a team of experts from the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority (UKCAA) concluded after conducting a four-day review of the ATC system in Hong Kong.

"The air traffic controllers at the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) have been doing a remarkable job since the opening of the airport. As in the case of other major airports, the HKIA has experienced some ATC incidents. However, in our judgement the rates of ATC incidents at the HKIA are comparable with what could be expected from the ATC operations at similarly sized international airports.

"We have reviewed all the incident reports and conclude that they were mainly technical losses of standard separation which posed no risk to safety. We also conclude that there is no discernible pattern that would indicate problems with the competence of the air traffic controllers or the safety of the ATC system. The Director of Civil Aviation encourages the reporting culture and requires every significant incident to be reported and investigated.

"In our discussions with the airline operators who fly in and out of the HKIA it was evident that they were satisfied with the standard of ATC operations.

"We are impressed by the state-of-the-art equipment and the comprehensive training facilities at the HKIA. We are of the view that the improvement measures being taken by the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) are appropriate and effective," Mr John Dancer, Head of Air Traffic Services Standards Department of the UKCAA said today (December 8).

The three-member team led by Mr Dancer has reviewed the management and organisation of CAD's Air Traffic Management Division, the ATC incidents investigation procedures, the ATC training and operations during their stay in Hong Kong.

They have provided a number of constructive recommendations in the above four areas with a view to further enhancing operational safety and ensuring a high quality of service. These include strengthening the organisation structure, enhancing standards and competence, improving the training package, and simplifying the ATC incident investigation procedures.

"We welcome the recommendations made by the UKCAA experts and are pleased with their confirmation that the ATC operation at the HKIA and in Hong Kong airspace is safe. We will study the full report to be submitted by the experts within one month thoroughly and consider the improvement measures," said Mr Albert Lam, Director of Civil Aviation.

UKCAA is the regulatory authority for all the air traffic services providers in the United Kingdom and has the required knowledge and expertise for the ATC review. CAD commissioned the UKCAA experts to review the ATC system in Hong Kong several months ago as it believed that it was opportune that a review be undertaken to ensure that Hong Kong is well prepared for the challenges brought about by the anticipated traffic growth in the forseeable future.

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PLA & US Military Join CAD in Search and Rescue Exercise

6 December 2000

Expert units from the Hong Kong Garrison of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) joined forces with the United States military specialists during a short range search and rescue (SAR) demonstration organised by the Civil Aviation Department to the south of Lamma Island today (December 6).

"The demonstration was part of an annual search and rescue exercise (SAREX) to provide continuation training and familarisation in SAR technique for SAR qualified air traffic controllers, aircrew and other units likely to be involved in such operations. A total of 11 units participated in the SAREX this year," a spokesman for the Department said.

Today's exercise involved aerial search demonstration by a Z9 helicopter from the PLA, which also provided a naval ship to serve as a winching platform. In addition, there was rescue demonstration of a simulated casualty by a HC130 aircraft from the United States Air Force (USAF) Air National Guard, followed by water winching demonstrations by a S70 helicopter from the Government Flying Service (GFS) and a HH65 helicopter from the United States Coast Guard (USCG).

The demonstration was observed by more than 100 SAR experts. They included representatives from the Mainland, Macau, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam and local observers from the Airport Authority Hong Kong, the Civil Aid Service, the Fire Services Department (FSD), the Hong Kong Police Force (Marine Region) and a number of airlines.

Before the activation of this short range demonstation, the SAR aircraft involved in this year's SAREX were on display at the Hong Kong International Airport this morning. They included one HC130 aircraft from the USAF, one P3 aircraft from the United States Navy (USN), as well as a Jetstream J41 aircraft and a S76 helicopter from the GFS. Also on display was the diving equipment of the FSD.

"As part of the annual event, a long range SAR exercise will be held tomorrow (December 7) to test the alerting procedures, coordination and communication facilities of the various participants.

"It will be activated this evening, simulating an aircraft in distress about 100 nautical miles to the south of Hong Kong. A PLA search vessel, a USCG Cutter and several search aircraft will be dispatched to the area tomorrow morning to search and locate the targets (represented by basketballs tied together) in the South China Sea," the spokesman added.

Apart from the PLA, this exercise will also be participated by the USAF, the USCG, the USN and the GFS.

SAREX 2000 began yesterday and will last until December 8 (Friday).

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UK Experts to Review HK Air Traffic Control System

3 December 2000

A team of experts from the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority (UKCAA) commissioned by the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) to review its air traffic control (ATC) system will conduct the exercise in Hong Kong starting from tomorrow (December 4) till Friday (December 8).

"The purpose of the exercise is to conduct an independent assessment on various aspects of the system, including organisation structure, operational procedures and manning, training and standards, as well as investigation of ATC incidents. The objective is to further enhance operational safety and ensure a high quality of service.

"Hong Kong's ATC system has gone through a period of significant changes consequent upon the relocation of the airport. Having settled down in its present mode of operation since the opening of the new Hong Kong International Airport, it is opportune that a review be undertaken to ensure that it is well prepared for the challenges brought about by the anticipated traffic growth in the foreseeable future.

"CAD is committed to providing ATC services of the highest standard, in order to ensure safe, efficient and orderly air traffic within Hong Kong's Flight Information Region. The review will help the Department achieve this objective," a spokesman for the Department said.

UKCAA is the regulatory authority for all the air traffic services providers in United Kingdom, and has the required knowledge and expertise for the task. The review team will be led by the Head of Air Traffic Services Standards Department of the UKCAA, with two other members from the Air Traffic Services Regulation and Licensing Departments of the same institute.

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CAD investigates air traffic control incident

28 November 2000

In response to press enquiries today (November 28) on an air traffic control (ATC) incident which happened on November 15, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department confirmed the occurrence and said that there was no risk of collision between the two aircraft involved in the incident and an investigation was being conducted to establish the causal factors.

"Safe operation is always the prime objective of the Department. Air traffic controllers are requested to continue to maintain a high level of vigilance and take every possible step to ensure flight safety," the spokesman said.

The incident occurred around midnight on November 15 at approximately 36 nautical miles south-southeast of the Hong Kong International Airport. There was a loss of standard separation between a departing Airbus 330 aircraft and an arriving Boeing 737 aircraft. When the two aircraft were 11 nautical miles apart the air traffic controller involved had noticed the possible conflict and ordered corrective actions accordingly. The pilots of both aircraft had the other aircraft in sight all the time during the incident and had resorted to corrective actions to avoid each other. There was, therefore, no risk of collision involved.

At their closest, the two aircraft were 1.4 nautical miles apart and the vertical distance was 500 feet instead of the standard separation of five nautical miles or 1,000 feet.

"The Department is committed to providing ATC services of the highest standard and will ensure a safe, orderly and expeditious flow of air traffic. It has taken and will continue to take all necessary steps to prevent recurrence of such incidents. Measures already implemented include strengthening of staff supervision, recurrent training for licensed controllers using the simulator, enhancing traffic monitoring and rationalising the workload of air traffic controllers," the spokesman added.

The air traffic controller involved in the incident has been withdrawn from operational duties whilst the investigation is in progress.

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Air Traffic Controllers Essential to Aviation Achievements

22 November 2000

About 100 air traffic controllers from 17 civil aviation authorities in the region attended the 17th Asia Pacific Regional Meeting of the International Federation of Air Traffic Controller's Associations (IFATCA) held in Hong Kong today (November 22). Bearing the theme of "Air Traffic Control into the Future", the meeting will last until Friday (November 24).

Ms Sandra Lee, Secretary for Economic Services said at the opening ceremony of the Meeting that it was a great honour for Hong Kong to host the 17th Meeting. She noted that the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) had now recorded strong growth in both passenger and cargo throughputs after a year of downturn as a result of the Asian financial turmoil, and the HKIA had been the world's busiest international cargo hub since 1996. She said these impressive performances owed no small part to our air traffic controllers, who were in the heart of our airport operations.

"Hong Kong is well placed to continue to be an international and regional aviation center. Hong Kong is blessed with a favourable geographical position and is also a gateway to China. With China's imminent entry into the World Trade Organisation, Hong Kong stands to gain tremendously from the expected increase in air travel and air freight in the region.

"Hong Kong is committed to progressive liberalisation of Hong Kong's air services market to expand our aviation network and promote competition. We also have a first-class airport and a team of high-calibre and dedicated air traffic control (ATC) staff. We will continue to invest in their recruitment and training, and the provision of equipment to enable them to make the full use of their expertise," Ms Lee said.

She added that the Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department (HK CAD) had embarked on a number of projects to improve the provision of ATC services, and this demonstrated the importance Hong Kong accorded to aviation safety and efficiency.

Talking about those projects, Mr Albert Lam, Director of Civil Aviation and one of the officiating guests at the opening ceremony, noted that the construction of the Backup Air Traffic Control Complex (BATCX) at the HKIA was completed in August 1999, and the associated equipment was installed and successfully tested in December 1999. Following the completion of a thorough training and familiarisation programme, the BATCX is now available for contingency use. Apart from serving as an operational backup, the facilities are also used for ATC training.

"We have also installed a Precision Runway Monitor, which has been thoroughly tested and was accepted in March this year. Operational evaluation is in progress. We expect to commission the equipment for operational use early next year to optimise the benefits of dual runway operation.

"Moreover, in line with global developments, HK CAD is undertaking a project on Communications, Navigation, Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) Systems. It is a big project of major operational significance and is expected to take some 20 years to complete. Trials are now being conducted on some elements of the systems. We are dedicated to moving forward and working hard to be one of the forerunners amongst civil aviation authorities in the world in the implementation of the new systems," he said.

Finally, Mr Lam noted that he was pleased to see the Hong Kong Air Traffic Control Association had taken the initiative to host the Meeting in Hong Kong. He added that it is important for HK CAD's air traffic controllers to maintain contact with their counterparts in other countries to ensure that Hong Kong maintains its position as a key international and regional aviation center.

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CAD Well Prepared for Safety Audit

12 November 2000

The Civil Aviation Department (CAD) has been well prepared for the Safety Oversight Audit to be conducted by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) in Hong Kong between November 17 and 24, a spokesman for the Department said today (November 12).

The audit team will assess the effectiveness of Hong Kong's civil aviation safety oversight system in ensuring the implementation of the ICAO provisions in personnel licensing, operations of aircraft and airworthiness of aircraft through local legislation, operational regulations and safety inspection/audit programmes.

"To adequately prepare for the audit, CAD set up a specific Working Group about a year ago to carry out an intensive review of the existing safety oversight system. Primary aviation legislation, policy documents, operational regulations and procedures were thoroughly scrutinised.

"An internal audit and an industry briefing were also completed in May and August 2000 respectively, the result of which indicated that our preparation for the audit was satisfactory," the spokesman said.

Safety oversight is a function by which ICAO Contracting States ensure the effective implementation of the safety-related Standards and Recommended Practices and associated procedures contained in the Annexes to the Convention on International Civil Aviation and other guidance documents published by ICAO.

Through the audit programme, ICAO aims at determining the degree of compliance of a Contracting State in implementing ICAO Standards; assessing a Contracting State's adherence to the ICAO Recommended Practices, associated procedures, guidance material and safety related practices; and determining the effectiveness of a Contracting State's implementation of a safety oversight system, through the establishment of legislation, regulations, safety inspection and auditing capability.

Among the 185 ICAO Contracting States, 89 of them have been audited to date since the audit programme came into effect on January 1, 1999. Although Hong Kong comes under Mainland China as an ICAO Contracting State, it was agreed amongst ICAO, the Mainland authorities and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government that a separate audit would be conducted in Hong Kong.

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Titles of CAD Senior Management to Change

10 November 2000

To align with the internationally accepted protocol and to properly reflect the status, duties and responsibilities of the senior management personnel of the Civil Aviation Department (CAD), the English titles of 11 directorate officers in the Department will be changed with effect from January 1, 2001, the Gazette announced today (November 10).

Director of Civil Aviation (DCA) and Deputy Director of Civil Aviation (DDCA) will be retitled Director-General of Civil Aviation and Deputy Director-General of Civil Aviation respectively. Title of the five Assistant Directors in the Department will be changed to Assistant Director-General, while the four Deputy Air Traffic General Managers will be renamed Chief Air Traffic Control Officers.

"As the Head and Deputy Head of CAD, DCA and DDCA are the key officers representing Hong Kong in liaison with other aeronautical authorities, the International Civil Aviation Organisation and other civil aviation related agencies. In the conduct of business with these bodies, CAD's experience is that the existing post titles of DCA and DDCA do not properly reflect their status, duties and responsibilities.

"This is so because many aviation administrations use the titles 'Director-General of Civil Aviation' and 'Deputy Director-General of Civil Aviation' for their heads and deputy heads respectively, whereas the titles of Director and Deputy Director are often used for their division heads. This misrepresentation of titles affects the smooth conduct of business, such as attendance at international conferences, panel meetings and ceremonies.

"The aviation administrations of over 60 places are already headed by Directors-General of Civil Aviation. These include the more prominent ones such as the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Japan, as well as Hong Kong's neighbouring authorities including the Mainland, Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam. Hong Kong is an international and regional center of aviation. The adoption of the new titles will better reflect the status of Hong Kong in the international aviation community," a spokesman for the Department explained.

As for the Chinese titles of the Head and Deputy Head of CAD, they will remain the same.

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Civil Aviation (Insurance) Order (Commencement) Notice 2000

3 November 2000

The Secretary for Economic Services has appointed December 15, 2000 as the day on which the Civil Aviation (Insurance) Order shall come into operation. The appointment is effected by the Civil Aviation (Insurance) Order (Commencement) Notice 2000, which is published in the Gazette today (November 3). The Notice will be tabled before the Legislative Council on November 8, 2000.

"When the Order comes into operation on December 15, all civil aircraft, whether operating commercial or non-revenue flights, will be required to have a combined single limit (CSL) insurance cover for liabilities in respect of five items, namely third party, passenger, baggage, mail and cargo liabilities. This will provide greater protection for third parties, passengers and shippers," a Government spokesman said.

For many years, the Government has implemented an administrative requirement under which aircraft engaged in commercial flights must carry insurance for third party liability, although their insurance may cover other liabilities. Aircraft engaged in non-revenue flights, such as private or corporate aircraft, are not subject to the requirement.

The Order will provide a more solid enforcement framework to cover the five items concerned. It will also extend the insurance requirement to cover aircraft engaged in non-revenue flights since an aircraft, whether engaged in commercial or non-revenue flights, may cause damage in the event of an accident.

Under the Order, the minimum levels of CSL under the existing administrative requirement (ranging from US$25 million to US$1 billion depending on aircraft weight) will continue to apply. The only change is the addition of a US$15 million minimum CSL level for light aircraft. This new level is to ensure adequate insurance cover while not imposing an excessive burden on light aircraft operators.

The Order was made by the Chief Executive in Council on May 16, 2000. It is to come into effect on December 15, 2000, in order to provide a grace period for aircraft operators to comply with the new requirements. Before the Order was made, the Government had consulted the Legislative Council Panel on Economic Services, the Aviation Advisory Board, the International Air Transport Association and the Hong Kong Federation of Insurers. All of them consider the new insurance requirements acceptable.

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Increased passenger and cargo services offered by airlines

3 November 2000

The Director of Civil Aviation, Mr Albert Lam today (November 3) showed several Members of the Legislative Council (LegCo), most of whom are members of the Panel on Economic Services, the air traffic control (ATC) operation at the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) and the state-of-the-art equipment used in training Air Traffic Control Officers (ATCOs) to ensure a safe and efficient flow of aircraft movements in and out of Hong Kong.

Mr Lam also took the opportunity to explain to the Members the comprehensive training programmes offered to the ATCOs. "All of them are required to be properly licensed for discharge of their duties. Their training is adequate and up to international standards. Refresher training through the use of simulator has also been arranged for radar controllers," Mr Lam said.

"To further enhance operational safety and ensure a high quality of service, the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) has recently engaged the United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority (UKCAA) to carry out a review on the Hong Kong's ATC system in December. The purpose of the exercise is to conduct an independent assessment on various aspects of the system, including organisation structure, operational procedures and manning, training and standards, as well as investigation of ATC incidents," Mr Lam told the LegCo Members.

"Periodic review of the ATC systems is a practice adopted by many advanced countries. Now that Hong Kong's ATC system at the new airport has been in operation for over two years, it is opportune to undertake a review. This will help us to ensure the provision of a high standard of ATC service," he added.

Mr Lam also briefed them on the work of CAD in other areas apart from the provision of ATC services. These include the issue of an Aerodrome Licence to the Airport Authority Hong Kong (AAHK) for the management and operation of the HKIA, the certification of Hong Kong registered aircraft, the monitoring of airlines on their compliance with bilateral Air Services Agreements, and the regulation of general civil aviation activities.

Before the Members visited CAD's Air Traffic Control Complex, they were briefed by Mr Billy Lam, the Chief Executive Officer of AAHK on current achievements and future developments of the HKIA. They also visited the Airport Emergency Centre and the Baggage Handling System at the HKIA.

The LegCo Members who joined today's visit included the Hon James Tien, Chairman of the LegCo Panel on Economic Services, the Hon Leung Fu-wah, the Hon Kenneth Ting, the Hon Henry Wu, and the Hon Howard Young.

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Increased passenger and cargo services offered by airlines

1 November 2000

An addition of 64 scheduled passenger and 12 scheduled cargo services to and from Hong Kong are offered by airlines on a weekly basis in the winter season of 2000/01 (October 29 to March 24), a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department said today (November 1).

In the new season, 103 more scheduled passenger and cargo services are offered per week, but 27 services are also suspended, thus making the net increase to 76. Most of the new passenger services operate between Hong Kong and cities in the Asia-Pacific Region and in the Mainland.

At present, a total of 63 airlines offer passenger and cargo services from Hong Kong to over 130 destinations worldwide. The total number of flight movements handled by air traffic controllers has increased to more than 3,600 per week.

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Air Traffic Control Standards Well Maintained

14 September 2000

Subsequent to the remarks made by the Director of Civil Aviation on the recent air traffic control incidents during a press session at an air traffic safety seminar today (September 14), the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) reiterated that air traffic control (ATC) services provided at the new Hong Kong International Airport remained at a very high level, and that it would uphold its principle of recruiting and promoting only the most competent people to the respective positions in the Air Traffic Management Division.

"We attach paramount importance to air traffic safety and every air traffic control incident is looked into thoroughly, and improvement measures are implemented with a view to preventing the recurrence of similar incidents in future.

"If the techniques of individual air traffic controllers are found to be unsatisfactory, a comprehensive evaluation of their performance will be made to ascertain the type of refresher training they have to undergo before they are allowed to resume operational duties. They will also be put under very stringent supervision to ensure their performance is up to the required level.

"With the air traffic controllers accumulating more experience at the new airport and the stepped-up monitoring of their performance by senior staff, we are confident that the standard of ATC services provided by CAD, which has all along been maintained at a very high level, will be further enhanced," a spokesman for the Department said.

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CAD Strives to Ensure Maximum Air Safety

14 September 2000

Mr Albert Lam, the Director of Civil Aviation said today (September 14) that the highest standards of training and operational procedures must be maintained to ensure maximum air safety.

The above remarks were made by Mr Lam when he delivered the opening address at the International Federation of Air Line Pilots' Associations (IFALPA) Asia and Pacific Air Safety Seminar. Hosted by IFALPA in Hong Kong, the seminar was attended by over 40 representatives from IFALPA, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), civil aviation authorities, the International Air Transport Association, and airline operators.

"We are all aware of the technological advances achieved in the modern day cockpit in areas such as flight management systems and electronic centralised aircraft monitoring system. These advances have, under certain conditions, reduced the pilot's workload which is a major positive factor. However, the 'complacency' generated by these advances is a subject worths discussing," Mr Lam said.

Another major discussion item at the seminar was the Satellite-Based Communications, Navigation and Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) Systems, a subject that is in the forefront of Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department's (HKCAD) commitments.

"The CNS/ATM has immense benefits in enabling aircraft to operate more frequently within their most optimum flight envelop, while minimising airspace constraints, and reducing traffic congestion. It also commensurates with achieving a marked increase in flight safety.

"The further objectives of the CNS/ATM project are aligned with the government's commitment of protecting the environment, in that the implementation of CNS/ATM offers an effective means of reducing fuel burn and avoiding unnecessary emission from aircraft engines," Mr Lam said.

He added that in order to fulfil HKCAD's international commitment to CNS/ATM, the Department had coordinated actively with ICAO and other aviation authorities in the Asia Pacific region in developing new operating procedures for regional as well as global implementation of the CNS/ATM technology.

Mr Lam noted that air safety did not only relate to safety in the air, but also to safety on the ground. "No matter how advanced the technology becomes, we must maintain the highest standards of training and operational procedures to ensure maximum air safety, and, furthermore, adapt to the changes," he said.

Other discussion items at today's seminar included runway capacity enhancements, air traffic route structure and accident analysis.

On closing, Mr Lam said that he looked forward to future cooperation with all the attendees of the seminar in other areas of mutual concern, which would enable Hong Kong, and the Asia Pacific region, to maintain the highest standards of air safety.

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CAD Investigates Air Traffic Control Incident

11 August 2000

In response to press enquiries today (August 11) on an air traffic control incident which happened on August 8, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department said that flight safety was not compromised in the incident and an investigation was being conducted to establish the cause.

"Safe operation is always the prime objective of the Department. Air traffic controllers are requested to continue to maintain a high level of vigilance and take every possible step to ensure flight safety, " the spokesman said.

The incident occurred at about 7:30 pm on August 8 at about 10,000 feet and at approximately 20 kilometres south-southwest of the Hong Kong International Airport. There was a loss of separation between two departing aircraft, both destined for airports in the Mainland. One of them was an Airbus 321 while the other was a Boeing 757.

At their closest, the vertical distance between the two aircraft was 500 feet instead of the standard separation of 1,000 feet. Both pilots had the other aircraft in sight. The two air traffic controllers involved have been withdrawn from operational duties pending further investigation.

"The Department is committed to providing air traffic control services of the highest standard in order to ensure a safe, orderly and expeditious air traffic control service. It has taken and will continue to take all necessary steps to prevent recurrence of such incident," the spokesman reiterated.

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New Aircraft Descent Procedure Reduces Noise

9 August 2000

The Civil Aviation Department today (August 9) announced that all aircraft on approach to the Hong Kong International Airport from the northeast will be encouraged to adopt a new descent procedure starting from tomorrow (August 10) to reduce aircraft noise.

The new procedure, named the Continuous Descent Approach (CDA), will be used between 11 pm and 7 am by aircraft approaching from the northeast, which typically fly over Sai Kung, Ma On Shan and Shatin.

"Unlike the conventional approach procedures, aircraft on CDA will be arranged to approach from a higher altitude and descend continuously to join the final approach flight path for the runway being used.

"As aircraft on CDA will fly higher and normally in a low power/low drag configuration, noise experienced on the ground will be lowered, and a maximum noise reduction of about three to six decibels could be achieved in areas under the flight path such as Sai Kung and Ma On Shan," a spokesman for the Department said.

Prior to its implementation, extensive trials on CDA involving aircraft from Cathay Pacific Airways Limited initially and all other airlines in the final phase have been conducted with successful results.

"The Civil Aviation Department will continue its efforts to reduce aircraft noise impact on the community," the spokesman added.

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Improved Helicopter Services Between Hong Kong and Macau

30 May 2000

Operational efficiency of helicopter services between Hong Kong and Macau has been enhanced since the implementation of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) routes and procedures from the beginning of May 2000, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department said today (May 30).

"Hong Kong and Macau are amongst the few places in the world with established IFR routes and procedures for helicopters serving the two cities," the spokesman added.

Before the implementation of IFR routes and procedures, helicopter services between Hong Kong and Macau were operated only when weather conditions satisfied the Visual Flight Rules. Flights were sometimes delayed or even cancelled due to inclement weather.

"With the implementation of the IFR procedures, pilots can utilise signals from ground navigation aids and fly along the designated IFR routes even when the visibility precludes visual flights. The regularity of the helicopter service between Hong Kong and Macau is therefore improved," the spokesman said.

Both the IFR and VFR routes and procedures are now implemented by Helicopters Hong Kong Limited and East Asia Airlines, which provide helicopter services between Hong Kong and Macau. Their applications for implementing IFR routes and procedures were approved by the Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department and the Macau Aviation Authority last month. The IFR routes were checked by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the General Administration of Civil Aviation of China (CAAC) flight check aircraft before approvals were granted.

The total number of passengers flying helicopters between Hong Kong and Macau was over 72,000 last year, which represented an increase of about 40 per cent when compared with the figure in 1998.

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Three-day Regional Conference on Aviation Held in Hong Kong

24 May 2000

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) Millennium Asia and Pacific Regional Technical Conference is held in Hong Kong for three days starting from today (May 24). Over 120 representatives from airlines, international and airline organisations, the aviation industry and air traffic services providers attend the Conference.

The Conference is held in two parts, the first is a business session to meet the governance requirements, and the second is a symposium for a wider audience. The symposium, bearing the theme topic of "Exploitation of the Capabilities of Modern Transport Aircraft", explores the capability of modern aircraft to enhance safety and increase operational efficiency.

"Many airline operators have upgraded their fleets to enable advantage to be taken of the operational and safety improvements offered by the Satellite-Based Communications, Navigation and Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) Systems.

"To achieve the maximum benefit of these capabilities, it is clearly essential that the enhancements provided by the manufacturers and funded by the operators, are matched in tandem by air traffic control authorities through the timely provision of up-to-date air route systems, associated infrastructure and the corresponding ground elements of CNS/ATM.

"Through the strenuous efforts of the International Civl Aviation Organisation (ICAO), IATA, the airline operators and air traffic services providers, various trials on the CNS/ATM systems have been conducted. The Asia Pacific region is one of the most active regions in the world implementing these new initiatives, " Mr Albert Lam, the Director of Civil Aviation said at the opening ceremony of the Conference.

CNS/ATM systems will minimise airspace constraints and reduce traffic congestion, and this will enable aircraft to operate within their most optimum flight envelope, commensurate with achieving a marked increase in flight safety. In addition, by operating on more direct routes, a reduction in aircraft fuel consumption is also feasible. Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department is now conducting a study and trial of the system for implementation and transition in 2003-2016.

Mr Lam also urged the attendees of the Conference to give support and encouragement in maintaining the present momentum to achieve a safe, economic and expeditious movement of aircraft around the world.

"We will fully support this aim and are committed to maintain Hong Kong as a regional and international aviation center," he added.

IATA requires that, at two yearly intervals, Technical Conferences are held in each of the regions. The guests who attended today's opening ceremony include Captain Yang Yuanyuan, Vice Minister of the General Administration of Civil Aviation of China.

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CAD Competent to Administer Flight Time Limitations Scheme

7 April 2000

In response to recent press reports on the Flight Time Limitations (FTL) Scheme and criticisms on the Civil Aviation Department (CAD)'s competency to deal with aviation issues, a spokesman for the Department said today (April 7) that the Director of Civil Aviation (DCA) does have a wealth of experience in aviation administration. In addition, he is advised by a number of pilots within CAD's Flight Standards and Airworthiness Division.

Some of these pilots are Flight Operations Inspectors. They are currently practising pilots, maintaining their flying recency with both Cathay Pacific and Dragonair - they hold Hong Kong Airline Transport Pilot Licences, in addition to the United Kingdom Airline Transport Pilot Licences and Australian Airline Pilot Licences.

These Inspectors have thousands of flying hours which include many hours on the very latest Boeing and Airbus aircraft, in addition to many years experience in senior management positions with major international airlines. They have for many years been extensively involved in Ultra Long Range (ULR) flying, and are currently involved in ULR flying. Consequently they are eminently qualified to advise on all pilot matters including crew fatigue.

In addition to the above, there is an accusation that DCA did not follow the statements made in court by the Counsels of the Hong Kong Aircrew Officers Association and CAD. This is totally incorrect. DCA has followed exactly the statements made by both Counsels.

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Aviation Industry Thoroughly Consulted on Aircrew Fatigue Rules

5 April 2000

In response to press enquiries today (April 5) on the Flight Time Limitations (FTL) Scheme, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) said that the capability of today's aircraft to support Ultra Long Range (ULR) operations had necessitated new guidelines to be developed to help avoid the onset of fatigue in aircrew, and that the views of the aviation industry would be fully considered before the guidelines issued under the Scheme were finalised.

"In order to ensure flight safety the CAD has been active in promoting new safety requirements relating to the avoidance of fatigue in aircrews and to this end, the Flight Time Limitations Working Group (FTLWG) was established in 1997. The objective of the Group is to review the existing standard provisions of the FTL Scheme and frame any necessary requirements to cover ULR operations. The Group comprises representatives from CAD, locally registered airlines, the Hong Kong Airline Pilots Association and the Flight Attendants Union, as well as aviation medical experts. It meets regularly to monitor the progress of the FTL Scheme.

"Through the efforts of the Group the new guidelines CAD 371 on the avoidance of fatigue in aircrews has been substantially agreed. The Group has proved to be a very useful forum for the aviation industry to examine the relevant provisions under the Scheme. It will be meeting again on April 20 to discuss remaining issues," the spokesman said.

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Increased passenger and cargo services offered by airlines

25 March 2000

One hundred and forty-seven more scheduled passenger and cargo services to and from Hong Kong will be offered by airlines on a weekly basis in the summer season of 2000 (March 26 to October 28), a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department said today (March 25).

In the new season, 162 more scheduled passenger and cargo services will be offered per week, but 15 services will also be suspended, thus making the net increase to 147. Most of the new passenger services will operate between Hong Kong and cities in the Asia-Pacific Region and in the Mainland.

A new carrier Pakistan International Airlines will operate scheduled passenger services in the summer season of 2000 to Karachi, which is a new destination. Starting from the new season, a total of 63 airlines will offer passenger and cargo services from Hong Kong to nearly 130 destinations worldwide.

"With the additional number of scheduled services offered by airlines, the total number of flight movements at the Hong Kong International Airport will rise to more than 3,400 per week. The number of flights handled by our air traffic controllers per hour will go up from 40 to 45 at the same time to cope with the higher volume of traffic," the spokesman said.

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No Air Traffic Incident Reported in HK on March 6

13 March 2000

A spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) today (March 13) said that the air traffic incident reported in today's Apple Daily was totally inaccurate.

"Contrary to what the newspaper suggested, there was no unusual event recorded in the Hong Kong Flight Information Region at 10 pm on March 6.

"Flight calibration work was conducted at Macau Airport on the night but air traffic in Hong Kong airspace was not affected. Neither was any helicopter flying between Hong Kong and Macau affected by such activities.

"Flight safety is always the prime objective of CAD. The Department takes every step to ensure a safe, orderly and efficient air traffic control service is provided," the spokesman said.

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Investigation into Air Traffic Control Incident of January 22 Completed

3 March 2000

The Civil Aviation Department (CAD) has conducted a detailed investigation into the air traffic control (ATC) incident of January 22, 2000, which involved two civil aircraft operating within the Hong Kong Flight Information Region (FIR) at approximately 110 nautical miles east of Hong Kong.

"The Department attaches great importance to the need to prevent a recurrence of similar incidents in future even though the investigation concludes that there was no risk of collision in that incident.

"The investigation reveals that the radar controller concerned had a satisfactory record of performance and that this was an isolated incident resulting from her shortcomings in operating technique. She has been removed from operational duties and re-deployed to an office post. She will be placed under close supervision for assessment of suitability and be required to undergo intensive simulator training before undertaking operational duties again at a later date," the spokesman said today (Friday).

Following the occurrence of the incident, a reminder has been issued to all ATC staff reiterating that extreme caution and vigilance must be exercised in handling air traffic. In addition, the Department will organise refresher training exercises for all radar controllers utilising the radar simulator to enhance their technique in the handling of various emergency scenarios. Such exercises will be conducted on a regular basis to strengthen their expertise.

CAD has also reviewed its ATC systems and procedures, and confirmed that they are operated in accordance with the standards and recommended practices of the International Civil Aviation Organisation. Moreover, the occurrence of these incidents has nothing to do with the location or design of the airport. In fact the new equipment and facilities at the airport have enabled it to operate with world-class safety standards and efficiency.

The rates of occurrence of loss of separation incidents for the airport at Chek Lap Kok (0.0029%) and the Kai Tak airport (0.0023%) are comparable. They are both relatively low compared with the high aircraft movement volume here.

"The Department has a well-structured and comprehensive training programme for ATC staff. In addition, a stringent proficiency checking system is in place to ensure a high level of competency and proficiency. In order to cope with the steady increase in traffic, it will continue to place great importance on the enhancement of ATC operations, training, standards and supervision.

"It is the prime objective of CAD to provide a safe, orderly and efficient ATC service," the spokesman stressed.

The two aircraft involved in the incident were an Airbus A320 aircraft from Singapore to Xiamen and an Airbus A330 from Kaohsiung to Hong Kong. Both aircraft were on descent under the control of an Area Radar Controller. Since the controller concerned did not positively apply vertical separation between the two aircraft or take prompt recovery action when they came close to each other, a loss of standard separation occurred. However, there was no risk of collision.

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Hong Kong Aviation Sector Experienced Smooth Rollover to February 29

29 February 2000

Hong Kong's aviation sector experienced smooth local and CoordinatedUniversalTime rollovers to February 29, 2000, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) said today (Tuesday).

"All of the Department's air traffic control systems/equipment such as radars, communications facilities and navigation equipment have been functioning normally since the rollovers. No computer glitches are reported by the Airport Authority Hong Kong (AAHK), the Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited, the Hong Kong based airlines and AAHK's business partners," the spokesman said.

Reports from the International Civil Aviation Organisation's Regional Y2K Coordination Unit at Bangkok, Thailand indicated that smooth rollovers were also experienced in the Asia Pacific Region. Air traffic operations and regional traffic flows remain normal.

CAD's Y2K Coordination and Control Centre was opened at 10 pm yesterday to liaise with the neighbouring air traffic control authorities on the regional rollover status, and to oversee and monitor the transition to February 29, 2000 for the aviation sector of Hong Kong.

Between midnight and 8.30 am today, there were 43 flight movements, 19 arrivals and 24 departures, at the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA). A total of 467 scheduled flight movements are expected at HKIA today, being the same as the usual daily traffic.

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CAD Explains Air Traffic Control Issues

26 January 2000

In response to a press report today (Wednesday) on the Aeronautical Information Data Base System and the signing of the Letter of Agreement between Hong Kong and Shantou Air Traffic Control Units, the Civil Aviation Department would like to make the following explanations.

The Aeronautical Information Data Base system (AIDB) is a computer system used by the Civil Aviation Department to process aeronautical information for use by air traffic control staff. One of the functions is to check automatically the air routes flown by flights operating within Hong Kong airspace.

During Y2K transition period from December 31, 1999 to January 1, 2000, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) had implemented contingency routes in the Asia Pacific Region. In order to validate these special routes flown by aircraft, the AIDB system was put on manual checking mode to ensure that flights were accepted in accordance with the contingency arrangement.

The AIDB system has been switched back to the automatic mode after the Y2K rollover and it has been functioning smoothly since then.

A new Letter of Agreement (LOA) signed between Hong Kong and Shantou Air Traffic Control Units will come into effect on February 1, 2000. A LOA between two air traffic control units specifies the coordination procedures between them. These include handover position(s), cruising levels available, separation between aircraft, communication equipment and coordination requirements, etc.

The LOA between Hong Kong and Shantou has been in existence for many years. As a result of the enhanced radar capability in Shantou, improvements to the existing procedures are now possible and a new LOA has been concluded.

The enhancements include the provision of more cruising levels between Hong Kong and Shantou, the reduction of longitudinal separation between aircraft at the same level from 15 to 10 minutes, and the provision of more airspace for aircraft requiring weather deviation to the north on the air route east of Hong Kong. These improvement measures will increase the capacity as well as operating efficiency on the air route along the coast of the Mainland.

The air traffic control system in Hong Kong is ready to cope with all these improvement measures, while the air traffic controllers have also been thoroughly briefed to adopt these new procedures.

A spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department stressed that flight safety is always the prime objective of the Department, and every possible step is taken to ensure this is achieved. An extra 12.5 per cent will be deployed to work in the Air Traffic Control Centre and the Air Traffic Control Tower during the peak traffic period of the Chinese New Year to ensure safe, smooth and efficient air traffic operations.

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CAD Investigates Air Traffic Control Incident

25 January 2000

In response to press reports today (Tuesday) on an air traffic control incident on January 22, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department said that contrary to what was reported in some newspapers, initial findings indicated that the radar controller attempted to carry out corrective actions when the conflict was evident.

The incident happened at 4.59 pm on January 22 at about 110 nautical miles east of Hong Kong. It involved a Dragon Airlines flight HDA437, an Airbus A330 from Kaohsiung to Hong Kong, and a Silkair flight SLK928, an Airbus A320 from Singapore to Xiamen. The two aircraft were descending on converging tracks under radar control. At their closest, they were about 1.3 nautical miles laterally and 900 feet vertically apart with SLK928 passing behind HDA437.

Prior to the incident the Conflict Alert system of the Air Traffic Control Radar Data Processing System sounded, serving to warn the radar controller that a situation of inadequate separation was imminent. The radar controller reacted to the warning and attempted to carry out corrective actions immediately.

"During the course of the incident, the duty Air Traffic Control Centre supervisor was also alerted by the Conflict Alert System and he immediately attended to the situation," the spokesman said.

At the same time the pilots of the two aircraft were also receiving alerts from their airborne Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) equipment. The pilot of HDA437 then reported that his aircraft was clear of SLK928.

"Based on the relative positions of the aircraft, the initial finding of the investigation is that there was no risk of collision," the spokesman added.

After the incident, the Civil Aviation Department immediately issued instructions reminding air traffic control officers of radar control techniques and requested them to continue to be vigilant and to take every possible step to ensure flight safety.

The Civil Aviation Department is conducting a thorough investigation into the incident. The radar controller concerned has been suspended from operational duties pending further investigation. The investigation is expected to take three to four weeks to complete.

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Number of Daily Flights to Peak at Lunar New Year

20 January 2000

Nearly 600 flight movements are expected to take place at the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) on February 4 (Friday), the day preceding Lunar New Year's Day. This will be an all-time high in the total number of flights HKIA handles in a single day.

"The number of flight movements expected on the peak traffic day represents an increase of nearly 30 per cent when compared with an average of 460 movements a day," a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Department said today (Thursday).

As at today, 27 airlines have submitted slot requests to operate 936 additional scheduled and ad-hoc charter flights during the two-week period from January 29 to February 13, with most of the applications falling on the period of February 3 to 11. All the requests received so far have been accepted.

"We are able to cope with such a significant increase in air traffic because both the South and North Runways at the HKIA are now in operation. Since the opening of the North Runway, the number of flights that can be handled by our air traffic controllers has increased to 40 per hour.

"It is interesting to note that the record high for the former Kai Tak airport was 483 flight movements in a single day, which occurred on February 5, 1997. Obviously, the round-the-clock service of the Chek Lap Kok airport and the availability of two runways can accommodate a significantly higher air traffic volume," he added.

To ensure smooth air traffic operations, CAD will deploy 12.5 per cent extra staff to work in the Air Traffic Control Centre and the Air Traffic Control Tower from February 3 to 11.

Those airlines that have already submitted slot requests plan to operate flights to 24 destinations in Mainland China, 11 destinations in Southeast Asia, nine destinations in Northeast Asia, four destinations in Australia and New Zealand, and two destinations in the Middle East and Europe.

The total flight slots allocated for the two-week period represent a 36 per cent rise over the Chinese New Year period in 1999. The previous record high of flight movements in a single day was occurred on both April 2 and 6, 1999, when on each of those days 560 flight movements took place at the HKIA.

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Y2K: Deactivation of Y2K Contingency Plans by International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)

1 January 2000

"ICAO advised that the Y2K Contingency Plans were deactivated with effect from 11 am (Hong Kong Time) in Asia Pacific Region west of the International Date-line including Hong Kong and its Air Traffic Control neighbours, Middle East Region and Europe Region," according to a Civil Aviation Department spokesman.

"Air traffic has not been affected by the activation of the contingency plans," he added.

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Y2K: HK Aviation Sector Experienced Smooth UTC Rollover

1 January 2000

"All of Civil Aviation Department's air traffic control systems/equipment such as radars, communications facilities and navigation equipment have been functioning normally since the Y2K rollover. No computer glitches have been reported by the Airport Authority Hong Kong (AAHK) , the Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited (HACTL), the Hong Kong based airlines and AAHK's business partners," Mr Albert Lam, Director of Civil Aviation said today (Saturday).

Mr Lam has been staying at the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) since last night to monitor both the Local and the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) rollover situations of the aviation sector.

"Health checks on all air traffic control facilities after UTC rollover have been completed. At 8.30 am, we are in the process of coordinating with our neighbouring Air Traffic Control Centres for the deactivation of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Y2K Contingency Arrangement for Air Traffic Services. The resumption of normal services will include the application of normal longitudinal separation of 10 minutes for aircraft at the same level, and the cancellation of contingency ATS route arrangement. The deactivation of the contingency measures on the whole Asia Pacific Region will be effected through the coordination of the ICAO Regional Y2K Coordination Unit (RY2K-CU) in Bangkok," Mr Lam said.

Mr Lam attributed the smooth transition to the extensive and thorough testing for Y2K compliance of over 500 systems involved by CAD, AAHK and their business partners such as all the Hong Kong based airlines, air cargo operators, ramp handling operators and the aircraft maintenance agents, etc. He thanked all the staff and parties involved for their great efforts in ensuring the smooth rollover of the aviation sector.

CAD spent about $2 million on the Y2K compliance programme, mainly for the provision of portable power generators, and contingency communication facilities including satellite phones, portable HF/VHF transceivers, and PC-based message switching system, etc.

More than 120 CAD staff are deployed for Y2K-related duty yesterday and today. They are responsible for manning the CAD Y2K Coordination and Control Centre (CAD Y2K CCC) and the Hong Kong China Y2K Air Traffic Management Centre (HKC Y2K ATMC).

Between midnight and 8.30 am today, there were 13 flight movements, seven arrivals and six departures, at the HKIA. A total of 293 scheduled flight movements are expected at the HKIA today, a reduction of about 35 per cent of the average daily traffic.

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Y2K: HK International Airport runs smoothly after rollover

1 January 2000

Hong Kong's aviation sector received no Y2K failure report since the arrival of the new millennium. Between midnight and 4 am today (Saturday), there were six flight movements, five departures and one arrival, at the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA).

Six arrival movements are expected at the HKIA from 4 am to 8 am with the next earliest scheduled arrival at 6.20 am, a cargo flight CX/LH068 from Frankfurt. There is no departure movement before 8 am.

All of Civil Aviation Department's air traffic control systems/equipment such as radars, communications facilities and navigation equipment have been functioning normally since the Y2K rollover. No glitches are reported by the Airport Authority Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited.

The air traffic services Y2K contingency measures recommended by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) were activated at 10 pm. These include 15-minute longitudinal separation between aircraft flying at the same altitude and the implementation of the ICAO Contingency Route Structure. These measures will be enforced until health checks on all air traffic control facilities are completed and a region wide deactivation agreement is reached through the coordination of the ICAO Regional Y2K Coordination Unit (RY2K-CU) in Bangkok, Thailand.

Reports from the RY2K-CU indicated that smooth Y2K rollovers were experienced at the airports in Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore in the Asia Pacific Region. Air traffic operation in the Asia Pacific Region is maintained at present.

CAD's Y2K Coordination and Control Centre was opened at 8 pm yesterday to liaise with the local aviation related organisations and the relevant government departments to oversee the Y2K transition of the aviation sector. It will remain in operation until 3.30 pm today to oversee the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) rollover at 8 am.

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Y2K:Smooth Rollover at Hong Kong International Airport

1 January 2000

No Y2K failures have been reported by Hong Kong's aviation sector since the arrival of the new millennium. Between 10 pm yesterday (Friday) and 1 am today (Saturday), there were nine flight movements, four arrivals and five departures, at the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA).

The last movement at HKIA before the arrival of the millennium was the departure of Cathay Pacific Airways Limited's CX 171 to Perth in Australia at 11.08 pm, while the first movement since the rollover was departure of CX 251 to London in England at 00.32 am.

All of Civil Aviation Department's air traffic control systems/equipment such as radars, communications facilities and navigation equipment have been functioning normally since the Y2K rollover. No glitches are reported by the Airport Authority Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited.

The air traffic services Y2K contingency measures recommended by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) were activated at 10 pm. These include 15-minute longitudinal separation between aircraft flying at the same altitude and the implementation of the ICAO Contingency Route Structure. These measures will be enforced until health checks on all air traffic control facilities are completed and a region wide deactivation agreement is reached through the coordination of the ICAO Regional Y2K Coordination Unit (RY2K-CU) in Bangkok, Thailand.

Reports from the RY2K-CU indicated that smooth Y2K rollovers were experienced at the airports in Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore in the Asia Pacific Region. Air traffic operation in the Asia Pacific Region is maintained at present.

CAD's Y2K Coordination and Control Centre was opened at 8 pm yesterday to liaise with the local aviation related organisations and the relevant government departments to oversee the Y2K transition of the aviation sector. It will remain in operation until 3.30 pm today to oversee the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) rollover at 8 am.