Temporary Change to Night-time Freight Operations at Sydney Airport

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Night view of runways at Kingsford Smith International Airport (Sydney Airport), Sydney, New South Wales, Australia with runway lighting and parked planes visible

Why are the changes necessary?

The COVID-19 pandemic, and resultant social and travel restrictions, have had a material impact on Australian aviation, freight and logistics sectors.

Over 90 per cent of scheduled passenger flights have been cancelled nationally, which has translated into similar reductions in under-wing freight capacity.

Airlines are working closely with the Australian Government, Australia Post and other stakeholders to inject additional freighter capacity into the network, to ensure packages and produce continue to move around our country.

To assist airlines in providing this critical support, the Australian Government has provided a number of dispensations for aircraft operating during the curfew period at Sydney Airport.

Freight operations are continuing throughout the day, however operations are necessary at night due to supply chain and logistics requirements.

What is going to change?

The latest dispensation requires that take-offs and landings do not exceed a total of 80 per week.

Dispensations allow for some BAe146 aircraft to be replaced with Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 narrow body freighters. The Boeing 737s and A320 freighters are younger, more fuel efficient and carry more freight per movement then existing aircraft operating overnight to/from Sydney Airport.

Aircraft will continue to operate on current flight paths for Runway 16R/34L and Noise abatement procedures will still apply.

Residents living in Botany Bay, Canterbury-Bankstown, Inner West, Randwick, Rockdale, Sutherland Shire and Sydney Local Government Areas may notice a change in some aircraft operations between 11pm and 6am.

We recognise that some people may be more sensitive to aircraft operations occurring at night and therefore people living outside of these areas may also experience aircraft noise during these times.

More information on curfew dispensations can be found on the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications website here (external link).

From 11 October for a period of approximately 9 weeks Runway 16R/34L will be closed for essential maintenance works and during this time the parallel runway will be used. More information about the change can be found here.

When will this change occur?

The temporary changes commenced on 11 May 2020 and are planned to finish on 31 January 2021.

Updated 15 October 2020 to reflect additional curfew dispensations


Why are the changes necessary?

The COVID-19 pandemic, and resultant social and travel restrictions, have had a material impact on Australian aviation, freight and logistics sectors.

Over 90 per cent of scheduled passenger flights have been cancelled nationally, which has translated into similar reductions in under-wing freight capacity.

Airlines are working closely with the Australian Government, Australia Post and other stakeholders to inject additional freighter capacity into the network, to ensure packages and produce continue to move around our country.

To assist airlines in providing this critical support, the Australian Government has provided a number of dispensations for aircraft operating during the curfew period at Sydney Airport.

Freight operations are continuing throughout the day, however operations are necessary at night due to supply chain and logistics requirements.

What is going to change?

The latest dispensation requires that take-offs and landings do not exceed a total of 80 per week.

Dispensations allow for some BAe146 aircraft to be replaced with Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 narrow body freighters. The Boeing 737s and A320 freighters are younger, more fuel efficient and carry more freight per movement then existing aircraft operating overnight to/from Sydney Airport.

Aircraft will continue to operate on current flight paths for Runway 16R/34L and Noise abatement procedures will still apply.

Residents living in Botany Bay, Canterbury-Bankstown, Inner West, Randwick, Rockdale, Sutherland Shire and Sydney Local Government Areas may notice a change in some aircraft operations between 11pm and 6am.

We recognise that some people may be more sensitive to aircraft operations occurring at night and therefore people living outside of these areas may also experience aircraft noise during these times.

More information on curfew dispensations can be found on the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications website here (external link).

From 11 October for a period of approximately 9 weeks Runway 16R/34L will be closed for essential maintenance works and during this time the parallel runway will be used. More information about the change can be found here.

When will this change occur?

The temporary changes commenced on 11 May 2020 and are planned to finish on 31 January 2021.

Updated 15 October 2020 to reflect additional curfew dispensations