In an industry first, the South African Civil Aviation Authority will launch an accident reduction strategy that will involve all sectors.
The South African Civil Aviation Authority is about to launch a multi-pronged and groundbreaking strategy – never before done by any aviation authority around the world – aimed at the prevention of accidents.
Although a formal date had not been announced at the time of going to press, industry experts and stakeholders have been working together providing consultation and information on a number of different aspects of the strategy that is about to be rolled out.
It is a joint initiative that will see both parties engage in focus groups, in-depth research and the formation of education content – all aimed at empowering pilots to recognise the signs of a developing accident and prevent accidents as well as a number of other subjects.
An important part of this will involve the presentation of educational seminars that will provide pilots with the tools that will enable him or her to recognise an impending accident.
The seminars will be presented by recognised senior industry professionals who will teach researched content. Ultimately it is envisaged that the content will be of such a high standard that it will be measurable and standardized and adopted into the training curricula.
As there is no ‘ideal accident’ to learn from, it is hoped that the root causes and contributory factors of some of the most lethal types of accidents will be presented and evaluated in a critical-analytical way.
Another initiative the aviation authority is looking at getting off the ground as part of this strategy is the establishment of focus groups – consisting of industry experts – that will look in-depth at issues such as how to improve the continuous professional development of pilots and instructors.
There will also be the opportunity to conduct in-depth research projects into the underlying factors that cause accidents.
“Oftentimes there are other factors that need to be taken into consideration when looking at what caused an accident and not merely the last link in the chain” said a senior source in the SACAA.
This multi-pronged approach will include subjects such as focus groups that will look at the possible impact drones may have on general aviation operations and focus groups that can tackle the topic of how to improve processes in the aviation medicine field.
“The CAA does not want to work in isolation – in fact, it is the complete opposite of this. We will be working with the industry supporting other safety initiatives that are already in place and will be drawing on experts in the field make their contribution,” said the source.
“We also want to look at better communication between ourselves and the industry. With the advent of social media pilots, today do not have the opportunity to learn from what we used to call ‘Hangar Talk’. This was the time when the older pilots used to share stories about their experience. Pilots today do not have the time for this. So we want to look at how we – all of us – can fill this gap,” said the source.