In a dynamic industry like business aviation, discussions that center on initiatives to enhance safety are crucial for improving aviation safety and compliance. Last year, our team attended several safety events across the country and brought back three key takeaways that will help operators reflect on their day-to-day operations and shape initiatives to enhance the safety of their operation.
1. Safety is trust.
Consistent actions are essential to maintaining and earning the trust of the people on your team. Whether it’s an SMS manual or a procedures document, the goal of those words is to inspire action, and these actions aim to build trust. Focus on encouraging collaboration and information sharing with the mindset of continuous improvement, and don’t be afraid to make mistakes, as they can be extremely valuable when we learn from them.
2. FRAT is not SMS.
While the FRAT is extremely important, it is just one SMS tool, but it can serve as a good first step toward SMS. After you start using a FRAT regularly, to further build out an effective SMS you should develop clearly defined objectives, policies and procedures, and a way to communicate a culture of safety that relies on no-fault reporting. Make the FRAT a part of your SMS, not the entire program. Learn more about SMS and practical steps you can take here.
3. Just do it.
As with every new habit or program, the hardest part is to start. It’s not uncommon to hear at events that SMS is too complicated or that their operation is ‘not that big,’ leading them to erroneously think they do not need a system in place. However, the reality is that adopting simple steps can change the entire culture of your operation and prevent accidents and incidents. It doesn’t need to be overcomplicated or too comprehensive; in fact, it should be tailored to the size and type of your operation.
As we reflect on the valuable insights gained from discussions in 2023, it becomes clear that the pursuit of safety, trust, and innovation in business aviation is an ongoing journey. AviationManuals remains committed to actively participating in industry discussions, contributing to safety enhancements, and sharing practical knowledge. For more resources that can help you shape your operation, please visit: AviationManuals Resources and sign up for our newsletter.