Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Building A Safety Case

Building a safety case is not just a tabletop exercise, but a conglomerate of several operational hazard analyses of changes that may have safety impact on operations. The outcome of hazard analyses, or operational impact is unknown  until changes considered are entered into the blueprint tool and constructed as a safety case.  When a safety case is built and completed, it becomes a visualization of the future.

Safety case is to buckle up.
An airline may make a safety case for changes to new routes, aircraft or operational bases. Hazard considerations to route changes may include language barriers or regulatory operational standards. Other hazards to change in aircraft may be handling characteristics in manual mode, or display of automation. A new base may need to consider environmental hazards, or local workforce available. Hazards to consider for safety cases could be anything beyond limits of pre-determined assumptions.

Airports may make safety cases for operators, and build safety cases for aircraft movements. Airports as operational surfaces are static in nature, with aircraft movements as one of the variables. These variables could be less than ten movements per day or several hundreds of movements. In addition to variables in aircraft movements, the variables in itself are subject to non-scheduled variables, as aircraft diversion and weather delays. This make airport safety cases more complex in nature than often assumed.

During the summer months there are often construction activities at airports. This could be construction of public facilities or operational taxiways or runways. The upgrades could be simple excavations or major blasting projects where standard operations and obstacles are analyzed. Blasting may be assumed not to have an operational impact since there are no obstacles to evaluate. However, blasting has the potential of a severe malfunction where the emergency measures has to be included in safety cases.

Safety case is venture out with parameters.
Safety cases might not be what they appear to be when analyzing assumptions. Only when analyzing hazard facts can a true safety case be developed.