Wing wins extension to Gungahlin drone delivery operations

Ian Bushnell 1 August 2019 9

A Wing drone in flight at Mitchell. Photo: George Tsotsos.

Google subsidiary Wing’s drone delivery operations in Gungahlin have been approved for another six months and extended to the suburb of Harrison, after a review that included a noise assessment.

The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development said that Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) had approved demonstration and delivery flights from Wing’s Mitchell base to Crace, Palmerston, Franklin and Harrison from 1 August 2019 to 31 January 2020.

Wing’s Early Flyer Program (first 30 days) has also been approved for Harrison.

Conditions were placed on Wing’s operations as a result of the noise assessment under aircraft noise rules, which had not previously occurred and had been a point of contention from anti-drone residents.

Wing can’t fly on public holidays and can only operate an average of 40 flights per day per suburb, and only fly in daylight on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 7:30 am to 7 pm, Saturday from 8 am to 6 pm and Sunday from 9 am to 6 pm.

CASA said the drone produced 69 decibels at 15 metres, the average distance for those in the community having a neighbour receiving a delivery, with the delivery process being completed within 45 seconds.

It was acknowledged that the drone had a particular pitch that would be different to other sounds experienced within a suburban environment.

Wing must also collate all community feedback during the next six months and provide this to the department.

Feedback can be given directly to Wing, Access Canberra, or at To complain about drone noise, contact Airservices Australia.

Wing’s drone trials and operations have been controversial in the ACT, sparking speeches in Parliament, petitions to the Legislative Assembly and an Assembly committee inquiry.

The extension comes as Wing announces it intends to establish permanent operations in Logan City, south of Brisbane.

Wing will lodge a development application with Logan City Council for modifications to its delivery facility in Berrinba and over the coming weeks will also be seeking approvals from CASA and the department to begin operations in Logan later this year.


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9 Responses to Wing wins extension to Gungahlin drone delivery operations
Julie Macklin Julie Macklin 6:30 pm 02 Aug 19

Great, all those disposable coffee cups (that will just go into landfill) flying overhead. The great advances that technology brings.

bj_ACT bj_ACT 5:59 pm 02 Aug 19

Hmmm 69 decibels at 15 meters and at an annoying pitch for human ears is pretty loud. No wonder people aren’t happy.

Warwick Bradly Warwick Bradly 5:44 pm 02 Aug 19

Yay! Bring on the Wing deliveries to every Canberra suburb. Less traffic, more convenience. Once the service settles in, the complainers will suddenly start using it and stop complaining. I'm sure all those that bitched about the mobile phone towers now merrily use mobiles.

No_Nose No_Nose 4:34 pm 02 Aug 19

The ‘shock’ of one coming within 15 meters of my property will no doubt make me turn to look at it, and it won’t be my fault if the high pressure washer I am holding knocks it out of the sky.

( I have checked, my high pressure washer is accurate up to a about 18 metres)

John Boland John Boland 4:03 pm 02 Aug 19

It only took '2 official complaints' of "LIGHT POLLUTION" to completely shutdown the soccer fields in Mckellar, yet entire suburbs of hundreds of people send official complaints through for Wings "NOISE POLLUTION" and it falls of deaf ears.... somethings wrong with the picture.

    Peter McMahon Peter McMahon 4:28 pm 02 Aug 19

    John Boland Amazing what $ backhanders will do. Threaten to have them fall from the sky and then they will soon disappear. After doing it never seen hovering overhead again. Cops had a good laugh.

    Bek Clark Bek Clark 8:20 pm 03 Aug 19

    John Boland the answer you seek is in section 51 of the Australian constitution.

Wayne Palmer Wayne Palmer 3:09 pm 02 Aug 19

Looks like a B-29...

Rooster James Rooster James 3:05 pm 02 Aug 19

Aaron Patrick, you must be thrilled

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