GAJSC Controlled Flight Into Terrain Working Group Meets in Anchorage, Alaska

The GAJSC Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) Working Group met this week at the University of Alaska Anchorage Aviation Technology Center in Anchorage, Alaska. The group completed work scoring the feasibility of safety intervention strategies toward the development of CFIT Safety Enhancements. The group also visited Anchorage Tower and TRACON to meet with local controllers to discuss ongoing work to mitigate CFIT events and the unique challenges of flying in Alaska.

The GAJSC already has issued Safety Enhancements to mitigate Loss of Control – Inflight (LOC-I) and System Component Failure – Powerplant (SCF-PP) accidents. Read the GAJSC’s reports and recommendations at LOC-I and SCF-PP.

GAJSC Controlled Flight Into Terrain Working Group Meeting

Last week, the GAJSC Controlled Flight into Terrain (CFIT) Working Group met at Boeing in Renton, WA to complete its preliminary accident scoring efforts. Utilizing NTSB reports and docket information, the Working Group has reviewed and scored over 160 CFIT accidents. Next, the Working Group will begin safety intervention feasibility scoring and Safety Enhancement development.

The GAJSC has already used this process to develop Safety Enhancements to mitigate Loss of Control – Inflight (LOC-I) and System Component Failure – Powerplant (SCF-PP) accidents. Read the GAJSC’s reports and recommendations at LOC-I and SCF-PP.

CFIT Working Group Meeting

Recently, the GAJSC’s Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) Working Group met for the second time in Phoenix, AZ. The Working Group continued accident analyses toward the development of safety enhancements to mitigate CFIT accidents. According to the GAJSC pareto, CFIT accidents are the second leading cause of general aviation accidents. The team will meet again early next year to continue its efforts. To see safety enhancements that the GAJSC already has developed to mitigate loss of control in flight and system component failure powerplant accidents, please visit: http://www.gajsc.org/safety-enhancements/.

GAJSC Meeting and GA Safety Summit

The GAJSC met on October 23rd and 24th, 2017 in Washington, DC. Two of the three winners of EAA’s Founders of Innovation Prize – a team of high school students from Virginia – presented on their Remora technology. The Remora System provides a head-mounted display for aircraft airspeed and angle of attack data.

The GAJSC also reviewed general aviation safety performance data and safety metrics, as well as discussed the implementation of ongoing safety recommendations and the newly constituted CFIT working group.

In the afternoon on October 24th, GAMA hosted the annual General Aviation Safety Summit among government and industry executives. FAA Administrator Michael Huerta highlighted that the current general aviation fatal accident rate continues to decline below the target rate of one per 100,000 flight hours and praised industry for collaborative efforts making safety improvements in general aviation. Read the Administrator’s full remarks here.

GAJSC Kicks Off 2017

This week, the GAJSC met in Washington, DC. At the meeting, the NTSB provided a detailed overview of the new eADMS for the storage, retrieval, and management of information associated with its aviation accident/incident investigations. This new eADMS is an important educational resource that will be beneficial to the work of the GAJSC and other safety improvement efforts.

The GAJSC also discussed recommendations for the FAA regarding the post-2018 safety metric. (The FAA’s current goal for GA safety is to have no more than 1.00 fatal accidents per 100,000 hours of flight by the end of FY18.) The GAJSC will revisit this topic in early 2018 to provide additional information to the FAA. Additionally, the GAJSC discussed expanding work on SE-41 (survivability) to help inform ongoing efforts related to aircraft technologies and structures. Finally, the FAA briefed the GAJSC on the safety benefits enabled through the new Part 23 regulations, including small airplanes certified for icing, reducing the risk of loss of control, and improving survivability by leveraging lessons learned from other modes of transportation.

Yesterday, NTSB Member Earl F. Weener met with the U.S. Helicopter Safety Team to present on NTSB’s Most Wanted List, general aviation accident statistics, and the GAJSC’s work. The U.S. Helicopter Safety Team, an organization aimed at reducing the U.S. civil fatal helicopter accident rate, is adopting a process based on the work of the GAJSC and CAST to analyze U.S. civil fatal helicopter accidents and develop data-driven safety interventions. More information about the U.S. Helicopter Safety Team is available at http://www.ushst.org/.

NTSB Most Wanted List for Transportation Safety Improvements

This week, NTSB announced its 2017-2018 Most Wanted List for Transportation Safety Improvements. NTSB has been issuing the Most Wanted List (MWL) of advocacy priorities since 1990. This list marks a new two-year cycle.

mwlLoss of Control in Flight in General Aviation appeared on the list for the fourth consecutive year. In remarking on the topic at the MWL press briefing, Member Weener highlighted the work of the GAJSC in impacting this issue. Loss of Control was the focus of the GAJSC’s first two working groups, resulting in the publication of two reports. More information about the GAJSC’s loss of control-related safety recommendations is available here.

Of the other nine priorities, NTSB identified seven as applicable to aviation, including:

GAJSC Presentation at NBAA-BACE

Last week, GAJSC Safety Analysis Team co-chair Corey Stephens (FAA) presented on the GAJSC at “FAA’s Meet the Regulators” session at NBAA-BACE in Orlando, Florida. The session featured a panel of FAA’s senior leadership discussing topics including FAA’s new compliance philosophy, the ADS-B equipage mandate, and safety data sharing.

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GAJSC Fall Meeting

The GAJSC met this week (Oct. 12) in Washington, DC to review GA safety data, discuss the status of ongoing safety efforts, and deliberate on FAA/industry safety priorities. Among the updates the GAJSC received, FAA reported on the expansion of FAA Aviation Weather Cameras from Alaska to the lower 48 (see Safety Enhancement 12 – “Deploy cost-effective technologies that can provide real-time weather information (including actual conditions as viewed through a remote camera) at remote airports”).

At the meeting, NTSB Chairman Christopher Hart gave remarks on general aviation safety data. NTSB recently published 2015 aviation safety data, which indicates that the general aviation (Part 91) accident rate in 2015 was 1.09 fatal accidents per 100,000 hours, the lowest fatal accident rate on record. In 2015, the NTSB identified 229 fatal general aviation (Part 91) accidents and 7 fatal on-demand commercial (Part 135) accidents. Recently released FAA data suggests that general aviation flying was up approximately 3.7% in 2015 compared to the prior year. The NTSB’s press release, including a link to the 2015 statistical tables showing accidents, fatalities, and accident rates for major segments of U.S. civil aviation, is available here.

GAJSC Summer Meeting

The GAJSC held its summer meeting on June 23 at NBAA headquarters in Washington, DC. The meeting focused on the FAA Small Airplane Directorate’s road map for future safety technology and the GAJSC’s soon-to-be-released System Component Failure – Powerplant (SCF-PP) Report. The FAA is interested in taking steps to facilitate technology for new engines, including the introduction of electronic ignition systems for piston engines. The agency is planning specific outreach to the community on technology opportunities, and is also looking to stand up work to review a set of incidents tied to V-band clamp failures.

A recently released Fly Safe on the prevention of loss of control accidents discusses engine failures resulting from inadequate maintenance, and includes several important safety recommendations. Read more about preventing loss of control and proper maintenance at here. Also check out the May/June 2015 FAA Safety Briefing “Check Engine!” to learn more about engine data management systems.