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RECORD STRAIT TRAFFIC

DUE TODAY

66 Air Liners

By a Special Correspondent

jyjELBOURNË, Tues. - Sixty-six air-

craft will cross Bass Strait tomorrow

to cope with the abnormal Christmas Eve

traffic.

This will be the greatest commercial trans- port undertaking ever launched between Tas-

mania and the Mainland.

A NNOUNCING this today, the

Director-General of Civil Avia- tion (Mr Williams) said special ar- rangements had been made to in- crease safety, and at the same time expedite the handling of holi- day traffic to Tasmania.

A complete reorganisation of air traffic control procedure in Tas- mania has been accelerated to cope with the Christmas rush. This new procedure came into operation on

December 17.

Chief features are:

A A new area control centre es-

tablished at Launceston.

A New radio beacon installed at

Wonthaggi.

A Improved aeradio point-to

point network covering Tas- mania, giving rapid communication between Western Junction, Valley- field, Wynyard, Cambridge, and

Essendon.

Q Increased air traffic control

staff in Tasmania.

New Control

Mr Williams explained in a spe- cial interview this afternoon that previously air traffic to and from Tasmania had been controlled from Essendon, an arrangement which was becoming increasingly cumber- some and unsatisfactory, even at

normal times.

Last October the Air Traffic Conr trol Branch determined to establish a new flight information region for Tasmania, and post an experienced flight checking officer at Launceston to take charge of the area.

Mr Roy Player, a flight checking officer at Essendon for six years,

has been appointed to the Laun-

ceston area.

This new set-up will have a marked effect on improving air traffic control, and will result in greater accuracy, increased effi- ciency, and a much more precise estimating of arrivals at destina-

tions.

The most important feature of this new control was the immediate re- lief to the responsibilities of Essen- don, which is Australia's busiest airport.

Permanent Plan

Mr Williams, who pointed out the

unsuitability of Cambridge as a . major airport to a capital city, said

the new procedures were operating . smoothly in spite of the difficult air weather conditions in the past few days.

He stated that the Launceston flight information region would be a permanent part of Australia's aid traffic control organisation.

Displaying the civil aviation map in his office, Mr Williams showed considerable optimism about civil aviation developments in Australia, once petrol and dollar restrictions

were removed.

Hè sent a special message of Christmas greeting to Tasmania

A special call will be made at Flinders Island today by a T.A.A. air freighter, which will carry Christmas goods and nearly two tons of second class mail accumulated at ' Launceston because of interruptions

to the shipping service.

! The freighter will leave Western

Junction at 9.10 am and arrive at 1 the island about 10.10 am.

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