June 2015


    The State Operational Safety Program

    On January 23, the Government approved, at the initiative of the Ministry of Public Works, the State Operational Safety Programme (PESO) for Civil Aviation, thus responding to the recommendations made by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) that advocate to base security management models on prevention-oriented systems through the participation of the main actors in the sector.

    PESO will facilitate decision-making in the field of aviation safety, through the continuous analysis of the information provided by the main actors of the Spanish aviation sector, through an integrated management system. In this way, a joint vision of the entire Spanish civil aviation sector will be offered that will allow the identification and assessment of safety risks, and decisions to keep them under control.

    The approved agreement defines the state policy on operational safety and details its objectives for each actor involved in the sector; in addition to appointing the Secretary of State for Infrastructure, Transport and Housing as the body in charge of its promotion.

    One of the substantive elements of the Programme is the dissemination of lessons learned in the field of safety. To this end, this Newsletter on the Preventive Approach has been designed. The objective is to publicise the preventive actions that are being carried out within the framework of the PESO and to inform possible areas of risk for the knowledge of all professionals and companies that carry out their activity in the aviation sector.

    In this first edition of the Newsletter we will address the main concepts of the Preventive Approach. We hope they will be useful to you.

    Preventive approach

    Safety management involves implementing and developing what has been called a “preventive approach” to safety oversight. The preventive approach complements the traditional approach, based primarily on compliance and inspection. This new approach is based on performance, risk management and security assurance and is process-oriented rather than impact-oriented.

    The Agency has recently approved a new internal instruction to fulfil its responsibilities in the area of PESO. According to this new instruction, it will be the staff of the Directorate of Security Assessment and Internal Technical Audit (DESATI) who first contact the companies in the sector to evaluate the risk mitigation actions undertaken by them.

    Preventive Approach: Strategic Actions. Operational Safety Action Plan (PASO)

    The Agency, in collaboration with suppliers and other public bodies, has drawn up, as set out in Article 25.2 of Royal Decree 995/2013 of 13 December 2013, the Operational Safety Action Plan (PASO) in order to achieve the operational safety objectives set out in the Programme. The Operational Safety Action Plan was adopted by Resolution of the Director of the Agency on 15 April 2015.

    The Operational Safety Action Plan was adopted by Resolution of the Director of the Agency on 15

    Safety objectives are twofold in nature: on the one hand, they reinforce the traditional prescriptive approach to safety management based on verification of compliance with regulatory provisions through inspections and audits (compliance), and on the other hand complement this approach with the current preventive approach to safety management (performance).

    The preventive approach to safety management is aimed at identifying the areas of safety that are most of concern or requiring greater attention following an analysis of the available safety data and information. The STEP identifies a series of activities or actions, to control or mitigate the risks associated with identified areas as priorities.

    The Unified Manual of the State Operational Safety Program for Civil Aviation is published on the AESA website.

    Preventive Approach: Operational performances. Fair Culture Guide

    In the SMS Study Group (Systems of Safety Management) under the Committee of Experts on Aircraft Safety, the need arose to develop a Guide on Fair Culture for use by the senior management of Spanish air operators.
    The fair culture policy is a key enabler for the implementation of Safety Management Systems.

    Fair culture policy is one of the elements of the safety policy, as set out in Appendix 2, 1.1.d of ICAO Annex 19, and therefore one is a key enabler for the implementation of Safety Management Systems:

    ‘The safety policy shall clearly indicate which types of behaviour are unacceptable with regard to the aviation activities of the service provider and shall include circumstances in which disciplinary measures could not be applied;’

    This guide, called Fair Culture and published on the AESA website, contains the definition of fair culture and recommends how to implement it. Moreover, it proposes a methodology for making decisions about what behaviors are unacceptable. In addition, it includes the legislative framework in Spain, which establishes the principles governing the fair culture of the Spanish State.

    Recommendations and good practices on landings and take-offs without authorisation

    The document “Recommendations and good practices for the reduction of unauthorised landing and take-off events” has been published on the AESA website as a result of the working group set up in September 2013 at the request of the Committee of Experts on Air Navigation Safety (CESNA). This group arose from the concern of service providers to study and try to minimise unauthorised landings and take-offs. In this Working Group, pilots and air traffic controllers have participated through the associations that represent them.


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