Adelaide-based Rossair plans to resume flying operations through a joint-venture with AusJet Aviation.
The company said on Friday the JV would cover the South Australian market and “allow Rossair to recommence flying operations immediately”, after the fleet was grounded following a fatal crash in May.
“After a challenging few months, the combination of both groups’ fleet and experienced staff will allow us to commence servicing our clients immediately,” Rossair chief executive Warren Puvanendran said in a statement.
“The new arrangements will see Rossair continue its relationships with and services to its loyal customers, as well as providing the leverage through AusJet, to bring a new dynamic to the State’s air charter industry.”
Rossair grounded its fleet of Cessna 441 Conquest, Beechcraft 1900D and Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia aircraft after one of its Cessna Conquest twin turboprops crashed near Renmark, South Australia.
The company’s chief pilot Martin Scott, experienced pilot Paul Daw, who was undergoing a check flight, and a representative from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Stephen Guerin, were killed in the accident. There were no survivors.
AusJet is based at Melbourne Essendon Airport and operates Super King Air B200, Gulfstream G450, Fairchild Merlin and Embraer Legacy 600 aircraft, according to its website.
It services government, corporate and private clients and conducts fire reconnaissance and scanning, aero medical retrieval, power line aerial scanning, military target towing, air freight and aircraft management.
AusJet chief executive Jonathon Moloney said the company had been talking with Rossair on joint operations in South Australia for some months.
“It soon emerged through this partnership that there are natural operational, financial and fleet synergies and new opportunities in this market from essentially combining the skillsets of two iconic operators from two separate state markets,” Moloney said.
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“Certainly, the SA market will now have an unprecedented and competitive choice of fleet within this enlarged operation.”
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) said in its preliminary report into the accident published on June 30 an examination of the wreckage and surround ground markings indicated the Cessna Conquest VH-XMJ hit the ground in an “almost vertical nose-down attitude”.
The investigation is continuing.
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