Airservices Australia is an Australian government organisation providing Air Navigation Services (ANS) nationwide and Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting Services (ARFFS) at 27 designated major airports. 

In Victoria, Airservices provides Air Traffic Control services at Melbourne, Avalon, Essendon and Moorabbin airports and Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting Services at Melbourne and Avalon airports during designated hours. 


  1. All airspace above all of Victoria is managed by Airservices from its Operations Centre at Melbourne airport, except for aviation Restricted Areas which are managed by other agencies e.g. Defence.  The degree of normal service available varies – depending on the aircraft, the location, and the circumstances. 
  2. Licensed airports and their Aerodrome Emergency Plans are the responsibility of the airport owner.
  3. If aviation Search and Rescue assistance is (or may be) required, the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC) operated by AMSA must be notified.
  4. The Australian Defence Force (RAAF) is responsible for handling emergencies connected with Defence aircraft and state aircraft of a foreign country (e.g. visiting Presidents, Prime Ministers, etc.). First response rests with the handling agency (e.g. Airservices Air Traffic Control) at the instance of the occurrence and Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting (ARFFS) at designated airports.


Critical task alignment / activity source


For mitigation activities, refer directly to the agency for further information.  

Response (including Relief)


Control agency for aircraft inflight emergencies and rescue and firefighting at designated airports

3.1, 7.2, 12.3


Provision of ARFFS at Melbourne and Avalon Airports inclusive of:
●  Fire and rescue response role to aircraft fires, accidents and incidents on or in the vicinity of the airport,

●  Structural firefighting on or in the vicinity of the airport and

●  Wildfire suppression on or in the vicinity of the airport

3.1, 3.2, 7.2


ARFFS provides assistance to state agencies in other emergencies that causes or threatens to cause death or injury to persons, damage to property, harm to the environment and disruption to essential services. These services include:


●  firefighting services to assist in controlling a fire that is not near a designated airport

3.2, 7.2


●  provision of first aid services on or in the vicinity of designated airports

3.2, 14.2


●  response to vehicle accidents on or in the vicinity of designated airports



●  technical advice (remote or in person) to agencies responding to or investigating aircraft fires, accidents and large flammable fuel fires in the State of Victoria

4.5, 4.6


●  initial hazardous materials response on or in the vicinity of designated airports

3.2, 16.1, 16.7


Through Air Navigation Services:


●  undertake actions in accordance with the Airport Emergency Plan at Melbourne, Essendon, Moorabbin and Avalon airports – in addition to the normal control of aircraft and the aircraft movement areas (at various times) at those airports

4.6, 9.4

●  assistance to aircraft involved in emergency operations (such as extra communications, priority handling, track shortening, etc.)

3.2, 3.3, 3.5

●  assistance to the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre operated by AMSA in the reporting and location of Emergency Locator Transmitters


●  designation of, and assistance with the management of, temporary aviation Restricted Areas in the vicinity of an emergency operation


●  provision on of an Alerting Post service for aircraft in emergency situations, and notification of appropriate agencies and organisations

3.4, 3.5

●  provision of an In-Flight Emergency Response service to aircraft in flight, that need assistance, and that are in communication with air traffic control

3.4, 3.5

●  when appropriate, the initial activation of the relevant Aerodrome Emergency Plan on behalf of the pilot of an aircraft in need of assistance that might reach a licensed airport





Airservices works with DoT (as lead Government liaison) to deliver the recovery activities of:
●  restoring airports to normal activity

●  assisting logistics interdependencies, contingencies and reconstruction

3.1, 3.2


Assurance and Learning


For assurance and learning activities, refer directly to the agency for further information.