Implementing SMS with Small Helicopter Operators


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International Helicopter Safety Team (IHST) workshop presentation from HeliExpo 2013

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  • In fact, you’re probably well along at establishing a formal Safety Management System. After all, you probably already have an operations manual, SOPs, operational control policies, training objectives, and aircraft maintenance procedures. Most flight departments are aware of personal safety in the work place, environmental concerns, the dangers of carrying hazardous materials, and security concerns both domestic and abroad. Through your training and your professional experience you are well prepared to recognize situations that would elevate risk on the job, e.g. fatigue, lousy weather, pressure from others. All of this is included in an SMS and you already have it covered!
  • Currently the things you’re doing are open and informal.Tighten it up and close the gaps! Add some structure to it.
  • What are you committed to?Provide a safe and healthy workplace by preventing injuries and property damageMeet or exceed all flight, maintenance, occupational safety and health standards & regulatiosHow will you fulfill the commitment?Management to commit the necessary resourcesCreate and maintain an environment of trust and unrestricted communicationImplement a SMSReview company risk levels on a regular basisWho’s responsible?EveryoneFull accountable when there is a knowing disregard for policies and procedures
  • Risk Assessment does not have be complicated. It’s as simple as a checklist, which something everyone in aviation can relate to.
  • Simple as a checklist. Used for a duty period. Stimulate a conversation among the team (which you are probably already doing). It can be paper, electronic (today’s tablets make it easy), or within a technology based SMS. Sample tools are available in the IHST tool kit. Retain in one place, periodically review and look for reoccurring risks within your operation.
  • If you are thinking about going down the IS-BAO path, begin by answering the question why. Then start with SMS, because it’s the cornerstone of IS-BAO (IS-BAO is continuous improvement and is the recognized standard of excellence)Closing
  • Implementing SMS with Small Helicopter Operators

    1. 1. Implementing SMS for the Smaller OperatorIHST Accident Intervention Workshop 2013 Presented by Sunshine McCarthy
    2. 2. Today’s Objective… “Examine how it can be done”
    3. 3. You know it’s the right thing to do, but…• It requires resources you don’t have• It’s too much red tape• It’s hard to understand and can be overwhelming• It’s an interruption to your operation/mission• It could result in changes to how you currently operate• It could be hard to get buy in from the team
    4. 4. Surprise! You’re probably already doing it and don’t know it
    5. 5. Build a structure around whatyou’re already doing… Tighten the process Close the gaps
    6. 6. Where to start…1. What are you committed to?2. How will you fulfill the commitment?3. Who’s responsible?
    7. 7. Risk Assessment…• Mission• Personnel experience• Human Factors• Aircraft status• Environment• Landing Zone• Other
    8. 8. Risk Assessment Checklist Alpine Air RA Checklist Date: Location:Mission  Guidance  Urgency  NOTAMS  TFRsPersonnel  Experience levelHuman Factors  Fatigue assessment  Hours on dutyAircraft  Open items  Scheduled/unscheduled mxEnvironment  Weather  Time of day  Terrain  Inflight hazardsLanding Zone  HazardsOther
    9. 9. “Carelessness and overconfidence are more dangerous than deliberately accepted risk” ~ Wilbur Wright, 1901
    10. 10. Final thought…why IS-BAO?• Regulatory pressures• Insurance advantages• HAI accreditation• Betterment of the company• Other