How have Technological Advances in the Aviation Industry Led to Stability and Record Profitability among Airlines?
Overview of Safety Management System
The safety Management System (SMS) is a formal and proactive method of system safety. SMS backs the goal of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which is to offer a safe and effectual aerospace system in the world. The Air Traffic Organization (ATO) safety management system is a wide range of values, guidelines, procedures, techniques, and plans utilized in identifying, analyzing, assessing, managing, and monitoring safety risks in delivering air traffic management and communication, routing, and inspection services (George, 2014).
Safety, which is the focus of all ATO activities, refers to the condition in which the threat of injury to people or property damage is permissible. The management and provision of safety of operations using SMS has been the objective of air routing service providers globally, and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has established the guiding principles and the directive for member organizations to have an SMS (Jinn-Tsai & Wen-Chien, 2007).
The ATO’s safety management system’s efforts support the FAA safety mission, which stresses on persistent advancement of safety and incorporation of the safety management actions across FAA bodies, plans, and areas of business. The determination to establish and effect a multifaceted Next Generation Air Transportation system (NextGen) to enhance the safety and efficacy of air travel in the United States shows the significance of the safety management systems (George, 2014).
The elements of the safety management system are combined to form a methodical approach to controlling and promoting safety. The components include the safety policy, safety risk management, safety assurance, and safety promotion (George, 2014). ATO procedures and tools that support the safety management system are assists in:
- Providing a standard structure to proactively and reactively detect and tackle safety hazards and risks associated with the National Airspace System (NAS) apparatus, activities, and processes.
- Encouraging intra-agency stakeholders to engage in handling the safety problems of an increasingly complex NAS
- Reducing secluded analysis and decision-making through unified safety management principles
- Improving liability for safety using outlines, managerial duties and functions, and SRM processes
- Integrating safety assurance processes that help the ATO to measure safety performance effectively
- Promoting a consistent cycle of evaluating, alleviating, and observing the safety of air routing services
- Fostering a positive safety culture that assists in enhancing system safety
- Measuring the performance and supporting the development of the SMS
Progresses in Safety Management System
Measuring NAS-wide ATO Safety Performance
As a way of supporting the FAA strategic initiatives and assisting it to attain the Next level of safety, the ATO has established the System Risk Event Rate as a measure of its performance. The System Risk Event Rate metric, a 12 months progressing level that equates the number of high-risk losses of standard separation to the number of total losses of separation, is centered on Risk Analysis Events. Risk Analysis Events are losses of standard separation whereby less than two-thirds of the needed separation is sustained. Risk Analysis Events are recognized and evaluated as a portion of the Risk Analysis Process, which considers causative factors and pilot and controller performance when assessing the seriousness and repeatability of incidents that took place (George, 2014). Through the Risk Analysis Process, Risk Analysis Events substitute the established measures of safety performance in the ATO, permitting relationships to be derived between incidents and possible causes. From the performance of personal amenities up to the NAS-wide system level, the Risk Analysis Process assists in focusing ATO safety plan on meaningful causes, occurrences, and dangers that require corrective measures, therefore, improving risk-based decision-making plans (Jinn-Tsai & Wen-Chien, 2007).
Accidents that Spurred Technology Advances
GRAND CANYON/TWA Flight 2 and United Airlines Flight 718
This crash prompted a $200 million improvement of air traffic control (ATC) system. No crash between two carriers has happened in the United States in 45 years (Gill, 2004).
PORTLAND/United Airlines Flight 173
The accident encouraged Cockpit cooperation. The United airline refurbished its cockpit coaching methods. Cockpit resource management promoted cooperation and consultation among the crew.
CINCINNATI/ Air Canada Flight 797
The accident made the FAA to instruct that aircraft lavatories be armed with smoke sensors and automated fire extinguishers. In five years period, all jetliners were retrofitted with fire-blocking layers on seat pillows and floor lighting to direct travelers to outlets in intense smoke. Airplanes that developed after 1988 have more flame –resilient inner equipment.
DALLAS/FORT WORTH/ Delta Air Lines Flight 191
The crash elicited a seven-year FAA research attempt that resulted in the creation of on-board forward-looking radar wind-shear detectors that became standard equipment on airliners in the mid-1990s.
NOVA SCOTIA/Swissair Flight 111
The plane collided into Atlantic about 5 miles off the Nova Scotia coast causing 229 deaths. The FAA instructed that the Mylar insulation be substituted with fire resilient materials in approximately 700 McDonnel Douglas Jets (Gill, 2004).
LONG ISLAND/TWA flight 800 explosion
The accident resulted in FAA inculcating changes to minimize sparks from faulty wiring and other sources. A fuel-inserting system has been developed to instil nitrogen gas into fuel tanks to minimize the possibilities of outbursts. Retrofit tools for in-service Boeings were established.
An SMS is an active process of constant development. Risk identification, analysis, and management need a practical, three-pronged safety tactic that inspects organizational, human, and technical faults.
George, F. (2014). Safety Management System. Business & Commercial Aviation, 46-50.
Gill, G. K. (2004). Perception of safety, safety violation and improvement of safety in aviation: Findings of a pilot study. Journal of Air Transportation, 9(3), 43.
Jinn-Tsai, W., & Wen-Chien, Y. (2007). Validation of fault tree analysis in aviation safety management. Journal of Air Transportation, 12(2), 43-57