Two projects in Surat region of Australia will open opportunities for air charter services in Queensland. These will be charter flights to service Taroom and Roma plus Miles and Chinchilla.
Queensland's Surat basin is heating up to boiling point. With a stack of major resource projects Final Investment Decisions (FIDs) now made, contracts are being let for projects ranging from FIFO camp constructions and early construction works through to pipelines and various support plants, not to mention the major LNG projects themselves.
Currently, the main two projects in the Surat region are the Australia-Pacific LNG (APLNG) and the Queensland Gas Corporation (QCLNG) projects. The good news is that for subcontractors looking at utilising air charter for Regional Queensland Fly-in Fly-out workforce solutions, a number of new opportunities are emerging which are set to provide faster entry via the various airports within the Surat Basin region.
Aircraft Charter into Miles and Chinchilla
The first of these is the Miles airport extension project which is well under way and due for completion mid-2013. This will see the Miles aerodrome extended to almost 1600m in length, resulting in certification for larger aircraft operations of up to around 70-80 seats. Whilst the Chinchilla strip is currently limited to aircraft of less than 30 seats, some are tipping it will see a significant upgrade in the not too distant future as well.
Charter Flights into Taroom and Roma
Taroom is now an attractive entry point for projects located near this aerodrome and can currently support FIFO or ad-hoc aircraft charter operations of up to 36 seat aircraft, providing a new gateway into the region. Roma airport is as busy as ever, having been upgraded so it can now accommodate the Q400, a 70 seat type aircraft.
A number of companies that have regular volumes of workers to move in and out of the Surat Basin and neighbouring remote mining areas are now investigating FIFO aircraft charter as an option to decrease their workers travel time, while increasing efficiency and cost-savings.
Often FIFO passengers have flown into the Surat Basin on Turboprop aircraft such as the Dash-8 after a transfer at Adagold's Brisbane Jet Base. Future charter flights may well include new Regional Jet Aircraft flying workers into the Surat Basin direct from other cities further south such as Sydney, Melbourne or Adelaide.