Premium on Safety - Issue 51, 2024 - 19

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The next challenge is understanding and
demonstrating why good, sensible people
(with the best motivations) can depart from
the accepted rules and inadvertently become
statistics. As mentioned above, deviations are
often motivated by very laudable intentions,
as in the " mission mentality " that historically
inspired EMT helicopter pilots to challenge
bad weather to save lives. As in striving for
faster production or more efficiency, trying
to save lives led to even more fatalities until
anonymity was enforced in these cases.
Safety starts in every industry
with an accepted set of rules
and best practices (SOPs) that
most rational people in a calm
environment accept as valid
and essential.
There are often good reasons to cut corners
or expedite, but there are better reasons to
follow procedures and SOPs. Selling safety
is an education in these values, creating a
global awareness of what is most important.
Aviation is a high-consequence environment
where missteps are cruelly punished. Careful
operations are essential and save more lives.
Compliance always has a greater value than
saving time and cutting corners. Coming home
to a loving family is much more important
than saving a few minutes with a shortcut.
Examples from your operation are the salient
selling points; make it real and understandable.
Stryker Corporation, a worldwide
manufacturer of medical devices, has an active
flight department that started a safety education
program on a volunteer basis. Over twelve
years, this program has grown into a nationally
respected event that brings in speakers from
across the country. Financially supported by
generous sponsors, Captain Dennis Sweet said
the critical engine for success was enthusiastic
support from upper management. It's crucial
to have everyone pulling together in an
organization from top to bottom; it can't be
" window dressing " or " lip service. " Programs
like Stryker's become self-sustaining and simply
" how we do business " in a robust safety culture.
Safety programs should also be arranged
to include respected exemplars from your
organization, people who " earned the T-shirt. "
Conscientious co-workers are the best models
to motivate safety on the day-to-day. If this
is unavailable, seek out industry exemplars,
but remember to " sell safety " as the most
respected, best path everyone should want to
follow. Safety cannot be perceived as just for
the " Boy Scouts. "
Commenting on the results of a recent
independent safety review, new FAA
Administrator Michael Whitaker said, " Aviation
is safe because we are continuously looking for
ways to improve, " adding that the team " made
some excellent recommendations, and we are
adopting some of them immediately. "
The FAA also has a comprehensive safety
education program at FAA Safety.gov.
Local programs can be aligned with the
FAA Wings program to award participants
certificates and pins for participation and
successful coursework completion. The FAA
follows a safety compliance protocol
that embeds the safety culture concept of
" honest errors " into its regulatory structure.
One of the first executive orders signed by
FAA Administrator Mike Whitaker was to
have his Safety Team report directly to
him to strengthen the FAA's commitment to
safety-a great indicator of safety priorities.
We are all on the safety team.
Fly safely out there (and often)!
David St. George is a Master Flight Instructor/FAA
DPE/ATP (ME-SE) and Part 135 pilot.
19
https://www.stryker.com/us/en/index.html http://www.Safety.gov https://www.faa.gov/about/initiatives/cp https://www.faa.gov/newsroom/faa-administrator-strengthens-safety-oversight-authority

Premium on Safety - Issue 51, 2024

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