Reactive and Proactive Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment
Modern aviation safety risk management includes:
- Hazard identification;
- Safety risk assessment; and
- Implementing appropriate control and recovery measures.
Hazard Definition Relating to Aviation SMS Programs
- People (customers, employees, contractors);
- The environment;
- Assets (aircraft, equipment, buildings); or
- Company reputation.
- Political instability;
- Regulatory changes; or
- Regional competition.
- Untrained personnel;
- Mountainous terrain;
- Cold weather;
- Chemicals around the workplace; or
- Infectious diseases.
Risk Definition Relating to Aviation SMS Programs
- Preventive actions that are designed to prevent an event from happening;
- Detective measures that focus on quickly identifying when a hazard manifests itself; and
- Corrective measures to fix or restore the company to normal operations after an event.
What is Hazard Identification
- Incidents; and
- Other irregularities.
- Changes in work procedures or the working environment;
- Purchase or lease additional aircraft;
- Decommissioning existing aircraft;
- Adding new buildings, runways or equipment;
- Purchasing or switching new products (parts or chemicals);
- Implementing cost reduction strategies;
- Incorporating new labor-saving technologies;
- Workplace changes due to accidents, incidents or identified irregularities; or
- New employee union demands.
How are Hazards Identified?
- Physical work environment;
- Equipment, aircraft, work materials and substances; and
- Work activity and customer activity.
- Reported hazards;
- Reported accidents and incidents;
- Formal and informal interviews with workers and customers;
- Complaints from both customers and workers;
- Investigations arising from reported events;
- Workplace inspections;
- Internal and external audit findings and concerns;
- Employee safety surveys;
- Civil aviation authorities' reports;
- Aircraft manufacturers reports; and
- Aviation industry trends provided by non-governmental agencies.
How to Assess Risks From Identified Hazards
- What could happen should the hazard manifest itself (again, if already occurred); and
- The likelihood of this actually happening (again, if already occurred).
- How severe the risk is;
- Whether existing controls remain effective;
- Whether additional actions should be taken to control future risk; and
- How quickly do the corrective/preventive actions need to be implemented.
- How often are workers or equipment exposed to this hazard?
- Does increased exposure increase the chance of occurrence?
- Has this ever happened before? At your company, another company? in the industry?
Evaluating Consequences Resulting from Hazard Manifestation
- What type of harm will reasonably occur? (bodily harm, reputation, equipment or plant damage)
- What is the potential severity (death, serious injuries, loss of engine or aircraft, loss of revenue)
- What factors affect the severity? (exposure, type of chemicals, weight of equipment);
- Can the hazard be contained or controlled if it manifests itself?
- Can one failure lead to another (water damage leading to electrical systems malfunctioning)
Final Thoughts On Hazard Identification and Risk Assessments
Managing risk for aviation SMS programs is not sustainable using spreadsheets. In short, the SMS documentation requirements are too great. A Risk Management Solution is affordable and pays for itself in labor costs and peace of mind when auditors come calling.
You may be interested in comparing your risk management workflow to others.