NBAA Convention News

SMS Now Available From Universal Weather

 - October 31, 2012, 10:20 AM

Universal Weather and Aviation’s new Safety Management & Integration (SM&I) program makes it easier for clients to manage a safety management system (SMS). The SM&I program is designed for any size of part 91 or 135 operator and includes a software component called SMS Manager. Demonstrations of SM&I are available at the Universal Weather and Aviation booth (No. 2516).

Unlike some SMS programs that bill per-aircraft or per-user, Universal charges a one-time licensing fee and monthly fee for its SMS program, with unlimited users and aircraft. And the SM&I program is available in a limited or a full-service version, with email support for the basic and telephone support for the full-service subscription. The SM&I program is accessible from any web-enabled device, the same as other Universal Weather products.

“The important thing is that we’re scaling this to what the operator needs,” said Universal Weather SMS operations manager Jason Starke. Customers can access only the portions of SMS Manager that they need for their operation.

The company’s approach to delivering an SMS solution begins with educating the operator, and to that end, Universal Weather is offering two-day “SMS for the real world” training courses. The first was held in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. in mid-October. “Our classes are devoid of any mention of any of our offerings,” he said. “This is about resolving SMS with tools they have available to them. Later we will do classes on how to use our tools.”

The Universal Weather SM&I program can be part of an IS-BAO program, and SM&I includes a customizable flight-risk assessment tool (Frat), which is part of the basic subscription. A filled-out Frat before every flight doesn’t meet all the requirements of an SMS, Starke pointed out. “There are other components that are needed.”

Universal’s SMS has been demonstrated to the Bermudan DCA regulatory authority, which has accepted the program as compliant with ICAO Annex 6, Part II. So far Bermuda is the only country with a mandatory SMS, although more are expected to add this requirement.