French aerospace group Thales (Hall 3 Stand C5) has launched a new set of solutions aimed at transforming the airport security and safety environment.
The FAA released Notice 8700.49, effective October 11, to guide FAA inspectors in helping operators develop Safety Management Systems (SMS). An SMS advisory circular–AC 120-92–was released on June 22, and since then the FAA has promoted the SMS concept industry-wide, at meetings such as the Bombardier Safety Standdown in early October and the Nascar race team SMS Safety Summit on October 20.
As a reflection of an expanding range of non-aviation security services, Houston-based Air Security International has changed its name to the ASI Group. The company opened for business in 1989 to provide security services to corporate flight departments.
Aviation Personnel International (API) and Waypoint Partners have collaborated to launch a risk-management service for flight departments called the Accelerator. It combines Waypoint’s safety assessment with API’s Annual Health Chex, a top-to-bottom consultation with all members of the aviation department.
A recent report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) asserts that certain FAA ATC systems are vulnerable to attack by “disgruntled current or former employees who are familiar with these (proprietary protection) features, nor will they keep out more sophisticated hackers.”
The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has unveiled a program to help air charter companies improve safety. Modeled after the ground service safety program the association launched last year, the initiative for Part 135 on-demand operators is designed to reduce the number of accidents and eventually to lower insurance rates and deductibles.
The Flight Safety Foundation (FSF) and the Aviation Safety Alliance (ASA) have merged, effective December 31, to become “the world’s leading resource on flight safety.” The new organization will operate under the FSF name and will focus on providing expert knowledge to industry and media on global aviation safety issues and best practices.
Nearly every general media report about aviation mentions the accident rate. Everyone–CEOs of airlines, repair stations, the government–takes credit for how low it is.
So what does this mean to pilots, mechanics, dispatchers, flight attendants and line supervisors? It means that we all can be proud of what we have accomplished. Beyond that, we need to be careful as we could easily lose the ground we have gained.
Ramp accidents and incidents continue to plague the aviation industry, but the good news is that FBOs, charter operators and flight departments are taking ramp safety more seriously. Tools such as the National Air Transportation Association’s (NATA’s) Safety 1st training program and Safety Management System (SMS) can help prevent ramp incidents, which has a beneficial effect on insurance cost and availability and employee morale.
Gulfstream’s Long Beach, Calif., business-jet completions and product support site is now ISO 14001- and OHSAS 18001-compliant. ISO 14001 is earned by companies that are in compliance with international regulatory standards and demonstrate an established and uniform approach to managing their environmental policies and procedures.