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  • Writer's pictureNSW Taxi Council

Sydney Airport Update - Don't Litter, Don't Feed the Birds and Maintain Speed Limits

Source - Sydney Airport

Littering in the Taxi Holding Bays

A recurring event in the Taxi holding bays is continued littering by drivers. Sydney Airport provides bins and has a regular cleaning cycle to limit the amount of waste collecting in the holding bays, however we continue to notice drivers littering, either dropping rubbish from their vehicles or not utilising the bins provided. The litter in these areas contribute to a significant safety issue called Foreign Object Debris or FOD. FOD at airports can cause catastrophic damage to aircraft that costs the airline industry billions of dollars every year or, even more importantly, lives. The damage to aircraft can include anything from engine damage caused by ingestion of FOD to tyre damage. Additionally, FOD has the potential to cause injury to staff working airside. FOD control is a team effort, and as such, all stakeholders need to work together to stay on top of this important aircraft safety issue. Sydney Airport requires that all Taxi Service Providers ensure that drivers are informed of the risk arising from FOD and be instructed to ensure that they utilise the bins provided. Sydney Airport will continue to monitor the holding bay areas, and any drivers identified as littering may have their vehicle blacklisted and refused entry to the ranks.

Don't Feed the Birds

It has been brought to Sydney Airport's attention that drivers at both T1 & Domestic holding bays are feeding birds in these areas. Sydney Airport, in line with Airport safety regulations, has a program to manage the bird life around the airport. The actions of drivers in feeding the birds or allowing access to rubbish or bins reduces the effectiveness of this program. Over the past two months, planes arriving or departing Sydney Airport have reported 25 confirmed bird strikes. Bird strikes are a significant issue for the aviation industry and can cause catastrophic events, such as in New York in 2009 when a plane crashed in the Hudson River shortly after a bird strike. Sydney Airport requests that all drivers be informed of the risk that bird strikes pose to the precinct and that feeding birds or leaving litter in the holding bays may encourage birds to that area. Sydney Airport will monitor the area, and any drivers identified as continuing these behaviours may have their vehicle blacklisted and be refused entry to the ranks.

Maintain Maximum Speed Limit of 20km/hr around the Terminals

Over the last couple of months, we have seen several taxis speeding at the airport. All roads around the terminals have a maximum speed limit of 20 km/hr which needs to be adhered to by all drivers. This speed limit has been set for the safety of pedestrians at the Airport. Sydney Airport request that all drivers are reminded of the speed limit at the airport and note that Sydney Airport will be working with its traffic management team and any vehicle identified as exceeding the posted speed limits may be blacklisted and refused entry to the taxi ranks.

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