November 13, 2012
By Jim Moore
Data collected from airline operators through a voluntary reporting system can now be shared with the NTSB, following an agreement with the FAA and participating operators and unions.
The Aviation Safety Information Analysis and Sharing Executive Board has, since 2007, served as a clearinghouse for voluntary reports and data collected from 131 sources, including 44 participating airlines that represent 95 percent of commercial air carrier operations. That information has long been shared with the Commercial Aviation Safety Team, a government-industry partnership, and used to identify trends and recurring patterns, and develop solutions including procedure and training enhancements. Analysis of the data, which is stripped of information that would identify specific reporters, has led to several safety enhancements.
Under an agreement announced Nov. 8, the NTSB will be able to access summarized information that will help NTSB determine if an accident or incident is unique, or part of a larger pattern of risk.
“The nation’s impressive safety record is in part due to an unwavering commitment by government and industry to work together to monitor data and identify trends to prevent accidents,” said FAA Acting Administrator Michael Huerta in a news release. “More than 90 percent of air carriers use voluntary reporting programs and this has led to significant training, operational and maintenance program improvements.”
The sharing will work both ways: NTSB has agreed to provide to ASIAS archived air carrier accident and incident flight data recorder information on request.
AOPA Online Associate Editor Jim Moore joined AOPA in 2011 and is an instrument-rated private pilot who enjoys competition aerobatics.
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