Canberra-based regional airline Brindabella Airlines has called in receivers and suspended operations after a second CASA grounding of aircraft in its fleet due to incomplete maintenance.
David Winterbottom and Sebastian Hams of KordaMentha were appointed receivers for the airline and its associated businesses on Sunday, the day after Brindabella grounded all aircraft in its fleet not already grounded by a CASA grounding of its Jetstream 41 aircraft in late November.
Codesharing partner Qantas has stepped in to operate some of the airline’s regional NSW services, while the administrators say they will call for immediate expressions of interest in the sale of the business, “however the business would not continue to operate whilst the sale process is conducted”.
“Given the approaching Christmas and New Year period we will be working very hard to minimise the inconvenience to customers and importantly, enable alternative travel options,” Winterbottom said.
In a statement the administrators said it was “too early to predict the ultimate future of Brindabella or to be precise about the reasons for the Group’s problems, however the competitive nature of the airline industry, regulatory and maintenance issues and the financial pressures this would have placed on the airline would certainly be significant factors”.
Noted the statement: “Brindabella Airlines senior management are working with KordaMentha and are assisting with any requests made of them.”
Brindabella employed 140 staff and operated five Metros and seven Jetstream aircraft on up to 250 sectors a week, with services from Canberra, Sydney and Brisbane to Newcastle, Cobar, Coffs Harbour, Moree, Mudgee, Narrabri, Newcastle, Orange and Tamworth.