Thursday, May 22, 2014

Flight Safety Begins At The Dinner Table

Often risk assessments are conducted to mitigate obvious dramatic and dangerous situation to aviation. But what effect do the every day trivial events have on flight safety? It's  not only disasters that could cause an incidents, but also positive and enjoyable events. A pleasant conversation at the dinner table could distract and cause a human mind to drift away from focusing on tasks. What takes place at the dinner table may be a contributing factor to  the outcome of next flight.  

It's widely accepted in the aviation industry that disasters, catastrophic events and accidents affects human behavior and decision making with a greater risk of an unplanned event. When airplanes lift of the runway;  passengers, staff and air traffic controllers have faith in the system that no one had a dramatic experience affecting their job performance. However, the enjoyable moments may also distract and make an impact human behavior.  

 A hazard might not be mitigable when the risk assessment is not analyzed at appropriate level.
 Job performance is the quality of an end result of a task completed, based on defined expectations. This result is documented, tracked, analyzed with an assessment of systems involved in reaching an acceptable level. This quality of job performance begins with the dinner table conversations.

Dinner conversations are both entertaining and educational, with subjects ranging from simple conversations of discussing TV shows, to teenager issues or complex science fiction theories that speed of darkness is infinite. There is no limits to what imagination may produce, and these conversations may affect human behavior and eventually job performances.

When imagination is filled with endless opportunities of directions; then focus on the task assigned.
When an aircraft lifts off, being a small with one person on board, or mega-sized with over 300 passengers, the assumption is that the crew at the controls are focused to perform beyond regulatory requirements to an acceptable safety level. If something does not goes according to plans, the pilot is often the first one to be scrutinized. Dinner table conversations may  have an effect on job performances of other than pilot tasks, ranging from  of aircraft design, manufacturing, software programming, data entries and inputs, dispatch, or enterprise operational control. Several manufacturing and technical systems have quality control processes in place to discover errors before being applied and distributed into the process.

With the implementation of Safety Management System (SMS), operational control of flight safety are achieved by applying a quality assurance program to capture errors before they are applied in the process.