AMSANZ ASAM & AMSVIC – Queenstown 2024

What a superb venue for the conference!

We were delighted to welcome over 170 delegates to this meeting, which was opened by Darren Rewi, Ngāi Tahu kaumātua and former Air New Zealander.

The range of presentations was wide, including distinguished presenters from far afield and first-time presenters. This year’s John Lane Orator was Dr Susan Northrup, Federal Air Surgeon from the US FAA, who gave an overview of regulatory activity in the USA. The Patterson Trust Speaker, Professor Frédéric DeHais from Toulouse, France provided a remarkable insight into studies monitoring real-time brain activity in pilots, and looking at how this can be used to improve safety. It is great to have first-time presenters sharing cases and research topics. One of the things I have come to realise is that our practice contains much which has “always been done that way”. It is good to see people revisit some topics to ask if it works or adds value. Sometime topics are dismissed because it seems too basic. Mistake! Ask the question! “Show me the evidence!” remains as valid now as ever. 

The Industry Panel tackling the issues around operational assessments and medical certification.

The industry and regulatory panels were stimulating and authoritative, given the breadth of contributions. It is likely that the “Safe Haven” concept will become known internationally as an important move to facilitate open disclosure by pilots and controllers. Remember where you first heard about it!

The programme paused on Easter Sunday. Many attended Warbirds over Wanaka, where fabulous weather permitted a full and varied display. While it is impressive to see modern aircraft performing, it is always remarkable the range of classic aircraft which are also on show. One highlight was the freshly restored De Havilland Mosquito displaying.  

The conference provided an opportunity for a range of meetings on the sidelines, and also a memorable conference dinner at Walter Peak Station on the far side of Lake Wakatipu. Crossing the Lake on the TSS Earnslaw (1912. Twin screw 500h p marine steam engines) with a spectacular sunset will be gracing many photo collections. A great evening, and nobody got left behind.  

RNZAF C-130 “01” – its last public flying display

Thanks are due for the hard work in setting this up. The support of the Australian Societies, ASAM and AMSVIC, from the outset has been great. We are immensely grateful to the Iceberg events team for their skill in taking the worry out of planning this. Thanks to the programme subcommittee and all the presenters, especially those who travelled a long way to join us. How good it is to be able to attend a world-class event without having to leave these shores. 

What next? We will be proposing a mini-meet probably late October. We are conscious that not everyone was able to attend Queenstown. Our constitution envisages a joint meeting with Australian society every three years. If you have any suggestions, please let the Committee know.  

ABSTRACTS – AMSANZ Queenstown 2024 Abstracts