If you regard safety management systems as just the latest fad for corporate aviation flight departments, think again, Daedalus Aviation Services president David Bjellos told the nearly 450 attendees at the 53rd Corporate Aviation Safety Seminar (CASS), which was held early last month in Palm Harbor, Fla. Emphasizing SMS’s importance, almost every presentation at CASS was about SMS or mentioned the topic in some shape or form.
Retired Rear Adm. Paul Busick has been named FAA associate administrator for civil aviation security, replacing retired Army Gen. Michael Canavan, who resigned following September 11.
General aviation will have to wait until later this month to learn how it might be affected by the aviation security bill signed November 19 by President Bush in a ceremony at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). Ironically, or perhaps symbolically, DCA remains closed to all Part 91 and Part 135 operations.
Although the number of general aviation accidents last year was the lowest total since record keeping began in 1938, the NTSB noted that the accident rate increased slightly from 6.33 accidents per 100,000 flight hours in 2000 to 6.56 accidents last year.
An Australian coroner inquiry into the death of the pilot and seven passengers on board a King Air 200 that crashed in September 2000 has adjourned the hearing until July to gather further evidence. The aircraft had departed for a 300-nm trip to Leonora, a small mining town northeast of Perth, where it was based.
How many manufacturers sponsor regular owner/operator safety seminars on aircraft that went out of production 17 years ago? Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America (MHIA) does, and its biennial pilots review of proficiency (PROP) series has significantly reduced the accident rate on the twin-turboprop MU-2.
Attendees at this year’s Aviation Services and Suppliers’ SuperShow (AS3) were acutely aware that this was their first such get-together since September 11. AS3 is a joint trade show held during the concurrent conventions of the National Air Transportation Association (NATA) and the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association (PAMA).
In the first quarter of this year, the U.S.-registered Part 91 and 135 business jet and turboprop fleet experienced 22 total accidents, five of which killed a total of 15 people, according to safety analyst Robert E. Breiling Associates of Boca Raton, Fla.
“Targeted guidelines” and “tough enforcement” are two key elements of a comprehensive voluntary plan from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) “to dramatically reduce ergonomic injuries,” according to Labor Secretary Elaine Chao. “This plan is a major improvement over the rejected old rule because it will prevent ergonomics injuries before they occur and reach a much larger number of at-risk workers.”
While promising to be “balanced and reasonable,” FAA Administrator Marion Blakey told those attending the recent AOPA Expo that the nation and her agency are caught between two imperatives–national security and preventing terrorists from using aviation for mass murder.