Dáil Éireann - Volume 638 - 26 September, 2007

Written Answers. - Air Accident Investigations.

Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Transport and the Marine if his attention has been drawn to the air incident which took place over Santry, Dublin on 16 August 2007; the action, he will take to ensure the continuing safety of residents of the Santry Cross tower and of the travelling public and flightcrew; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20748/07]

  Deputy Noel Dempsey:I was officially notified of this Serious Incident by the Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) of my Department on the 21 Aug 2007. Following their initial investigation, the AAIU issued a Preliminary Report on the 21 Sept 2007. This Report outlined the basic facts as known at the time and also contained two Interim Safety Recommendations, which were addressed to the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA).

The first Safety Recommendation stated that the IAA should promulgate to pilots and operators the possibility of confusing the obstacle at Santry Cross, Dublin with the approach lighting of Runway 34 at Dublin Airport.

The IAA have accepted this Safety Recommendation and have already issued an Air Traffic Operations Notice (047/07) to that effect. The second Safety Recommendation stated that the IAA should review the suitability of obstacle lighting as installed on the 52 metre-high building situated at Santry Cross, Dublin. The IAA has accepted this Safety Recommendation. The IAA have reviewed the lighting scheme installed on the 52m high hotel at Santry Cross and have been in contact with the Building Management Company to have the lights changed from fixed red obstacle lights to flashing red obstacle lights. The company has commenced the process of acquiring the necessary fixtures to alter the lights as soon as possible. The AAIU’s Investigation into [356] this Serious Incident is on-going and a Full Report will be published in due course.