Safety a Philosophical Approach …

It is generally believed that aviation has an enviable safety record. This is correct when considering larger, regular public transport aircraft. However, when comparing the aviation accident statistics for corporate and general aviation aircraft, standards can vary enormously making it difficult to identify the standards being applied by an organisation.

Red Thunder seeks to achieve the very highest levels of safety by setting standards which require a systems approach, and which address the human element thru active supervision.

There is a time-honoured flight safety truism which acknowledges that ‘the prevention of an aircraft accident is far more cost effective for those involved and the aviation industry.

When considering the cost of safety, few managers correctly assess the indirect costs of an aircraft accident. There are many well-known aircraft accidents which have caused the demise of otherwise reputable organisations.

Some of these indirect costs include:

  • Recovery of the wreckage and the restoration of the accident site
  • Loss of revenue
  • Insurance premium adjustments
  • Loss of productivity due to a redirection of resources to business recovery
  • Loss of passenger confidence in both the company and the industry
  • Litigation and /or prosecution, and most importantly,
  • The moral cost to a community where life has been lost.

Whilst Government Aviation Authorities are tasked with promoting aviation safety and conducting accident and incident investigations, it behoves each of us to intervene and minimise the chance of a chain of event which might lead to an Incident or accident.

One event rarely causes an accident. Accidents usually result from the interlinking of a number of factors which breach safeguards and barriers built to protect against safety hazards. These hazards can vary in severity and range across the spectrum of aviation operations. When viewed in isolation, some may appear minor or even insignificant in nature, but if placed into a sequence with other hazards, they continue the momentum towards an accident.

Accident and incident investigations continue to reveal a need to attend to human performance and systemic issues.

Good safety management facilitates the identification and elimination of safety hazards from the workplace and reduces the likelihood of ‘simple human errors’ breaching organisational safeguards or defences. Once hazards are identified, elimination is often a simple and inexpensive process, which frequently provides for an unforeseen operational efficiency. Hazards that require expensive engineering processes to be eliminated can usually be neutralised by inexpensive and workable procedural changes.

The primary safety objective at Red Thunder is to detect of as many safety hazards as possible within the organisation. Hazards which are considered serious require immediate reporting and resolution. At Red Thunder this may include the termination of flight activities. Those hazards not likely to immediately affect the operation, need to be reported and are dealt with through our formal management processes.

Red Thunder assessment of hazards encompass our review of;

  • Management and Supervision
  • Standard Operating Procedures
  • Check and Training
  • Fatigue Levels
  • Safety Program Management
  • Safety Equipment
  • Aircraft General
  • Documentation
  • Communication Systems
  • Facilities, and
  • Other item as identified.

Red Thunder safety initiatives emphasize a pro-active, rather than re-active, approach to flight and ground safety. The safety goal for fatal or hull loss accidents must be zero and the goal for other less significant incidents should be calculated as a reducing percentage of the previous 2-3 years’ experience. The aim is to set the standard for the coming years by achieving as low an incident rate as possible, within the first 3 years of operations.

Accident or Incident causation can no longer be attribute to the operator who last controlled a failed activity. These occurrences are frequently traced to a multiplicity of causal factors, many of which have been active within an organisations systems for several years.

Red Thunder conducts multiple aircraft operations, requiring the supervision of higher than normal risk profiles. In over 5 years of operations we are proud to up-hold a zero-hull loss and an incident rate which far exceeds organisational goals.

Safety Management at Red Thunder is supervised by AeroSmart Pty Ltd, Aviation Safety and Accident Consultants.

Safety Management & Reporting

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) and Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) are charged with primary functions which seek to maintain and improve aviation safety.

The ATSB primary function is to collects, hold and uses a range of information for this purpose.

The CASA primary function is to establish and maintain a regulatory framework which enhances and promotes the safety of civil aviation, with particular emphasis on preventing aviation accidents and incidents.

Consistent with theses objectives the ATSB recognises CASA’s need to access a range of information about aviation safety occurrences which are collected and held by the ATSB.

Red Thunder Safety Reporting System

Red Thunder subscribes to best practice principles defining its safety management role thru a robust hazard identification and occurrence reporting system. Our Hazard Identification and Occurrence reporting system addresses both ground and air occurrences. We aim to reduce the population of hazards within our operation thereby reducing the probability of a ‘Chain of Events’ to an Incident or Accident.

Aircrew should advise either of the Air-Boss, Programmer, Safety Officer or Standards Officer of any Hazard or Safety Occurrence observed. Aircrew are encouraged to formally report hazards and or occurrences thru our internal electronic reporting systems. These include the;

  • Red Thunder Safety Hazard Report Form, accessible here, and
  • Red Thunder Incident/ Occurrence Report Form, here.

Red Thunder aircrew are required to abide Mandatory Aviation Accident and Incident Notifications and are made aware of the REPCON and the ASRS reporting systems. Aircrew should consult the Red Thunder Safety Officer for advice and details of how and under what circumstances these external reporting systems should be used. Access to these systems are available here.