Assisting Overseas Investigations

Picture shows numerous international flags on the forecourt of ParliamentTAIC's jurisdiction extends to the 12 nautical mile limit of New Zealand's territorial waters, the land within that, and the air above, and to New Zealand registered aircraft or ships anywhere in the world.

By agreement, another country may lead investigations into occurrences in international waters or airspace involving NZ-registered ships and aircraft, such as one closer to the accident site or where an aircraft was made.

The Commission can also assist a similar overseas accident investigation Organisations.

To be clear, these investigations are conducted by those states, not New Zealand. 

This aligns with New Zealand’s international obligations under a number of international conventions, including:

  • Convention on International Civil Aviation, including Annex 13 which is concerned with accident investigation.
  • Convention on the International Maritime Organization
  • International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, including the Casualty Investigation Code which is concerned with accident investigation.
  • International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers
  • Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea

Assistance depends on the circumstance but may include:

  • Taking evidence or interviewing witnesses in New Zealand on behalf of the investigating Organisation 
  • Providing information to the investigating Organisation, where appropriate
  • Commenting on draft accident reports.

TAIC has also provided investigation assistance to other countries in the Pacific region as part of New Zealand’s assistance programme. This has included TAIC investigators assisting investigations into an accident for another country. Again, these investigations are not Commission investigations. 

Further information on current and historic engagement by the Commission in overseas investigations can be found here.