Search and Rescue

What does the RCC do when they find a crashed aircraft?

Safety, Search and Rescue

Tuesday 18 October, 2016

When it is known that an aircraft will crash or has crashed and the crash position is incidentally reported or known with reasonable certainty, the RCC is required to confirm the crash site and ensure the provision of medical assistance and rescue of the survivors.

Pending assumption of the responsibility for the wreckage by ATSB, the RCC shall endeavour to arrange a guard at the crash site to prevent interference with the wreckage or with marks made by the aircraft in landing. State/Territory police customarily act as guards.

Aircraft crashes that involve fatalities are treated as crime scenes from the outset and once survivors have been checked with minimal disruption to the scene, the RCC’s responsibility ceases and the scene is then subject to investigation by State/Territory police under the State/Territory coronial legislation and/or ATSB.

(Reference: NATSAR Manual, 2014, p. 92)