SMS Pro Aviation Safety Software Blog 4 Airlines & Airports

What Is a Risk Control in Aviation SMS: Meaning, Purpose, Application

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 27, 2019 5:56:00 AM

What Is a Risk Control in Aviation SMS Programs

Risk controls in aviation safety management systems (SMS) are a company’s shield against danger and the best chance for aviation service providers to conduct operations successfully.

Danger can be many things in an operational environment, but generally danger falls into one of the following categories:

  • Human behavior (i.e., Human Factors);
  • “Things” in the environment, such as weather, machinery, obstructions;
  • Safety events (risks) that will lead to damages without intervention; and
  • Bureaucratic weaknesses.
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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

What is Proactive Risk Management in Aviation SMS?

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 26, 2019 6:20:00 AM

Understand What is Proactive Risk Management

Proactive safety management is often upheld as the second highest form of risk management after "predictive risk management." This is because being able to demonstrate proactive risk management activities generally doesn’t happen until an aviation safety management system (SMS) matures beyond Phase 2..

The primary goals of proactive management of safety are:


  • Identify precursors that lead to risk;
  • Identify threats before they become dangerous; and
  • Understand what behaviors and attitudes are influencing safety performance.
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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

Difference Between Proactive and Mitigative Risk Controls in Aviation SMS

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 25, 2019 6:03:00 AM

What Is a Risk Control in Aviation SMS?

Hazard identification and risk management are two major activities of formal, aviation safety management systems (SMS). Once the hazard is identified, the safety concern is reported to management for treatment via the SMS' risk management processes. SMS risk management processes evaluate:

  • Affected system(s);
  • Anticipated organizational risk from a risk analysis;
  • Risk assessment to determine priority of the safety concern; and
  • Risk controls.
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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

What Is Aviation Safety?

Posted by Christopher Howell on Apr 23, 2019 6:13:00 AM

Understanding Safety Terms Remains Important

We write everyday about topics relating to aviation safety management systems (SMS), yet we have always taken for granted that you know what is aviation safety?

Deep down, most of us have an idea about safety. We can logically expand a safety definition to encompass the aviation industry. Yet this takes work to consider the broad implications. I've taken a few moments to discuss what is aviation safety, since I've never defined it in the past.

I'm hoping to share a few insights and I am also hoping that other industry experts will expand upon this often overlooked definition.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

3 Things Preventing Effective Proactive Risk Management in Aviation SMS

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 19, 2019 6:09:00 AM

What Is Proactive Risk Management?

I see many misnomers about what proactive risk management is when talking in context of an aviation safety management system (SMS).

Often one sees the proactive risk management concept clumped together with risk management in general, as if they are one in the same. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Not only in reference to maturing aviation SMS, proactive risk management is a specific level of risk management achievement in day to day operations.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

4 Major Activities of Proactive Risk Management in Aviation SMS

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 18, 2019 6:05:00 AM

What Are Main Activities of Proactive Risk Management?

Like aviation safety culture, proactive risk management is another part of aviation safety management systems (SMS) that a surprising number of people fail to truly understand. This creates missed opportunities and unfulfilled expectations that many aviation service providers can ill afford.

Setting the stage for proactive risk management in an aviation SMS is like painting a house. Safety teams

  1. plan and set safety goals;
  2. train employees on hazard identification;
  3. monitor employee SMS performance activities to determine training effectiveness;
  4. promote the SMS with proactive hazard identification-related messages; and
  5. continuously monitor, review and repeat the process.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

5 Safety Management Systems Questions You Need Answers To

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 12, 2019 6:00:00 AM

Questions Come First in Safety Management

The unfortunate fact is that many managers in aviation safety management systems (SMS) don’t start asking serious questions until their SMS is either “stuck” or in trouble.

Questions and answers need to come at the beginning of SMS implementation. Your answers to fundamental questions about safety management will be a guideline through the entire process of your SMS' implementation.

I can’t help but observe that aviation oversight agencies are constantly reinforcing the idea that there is one right answer to every situation. But consider: there are thousands of organizations who adopt safety programs, and each of them has unique safety needs. Each organization should therefore also have unique answers to questions about SMS. An SMS must support the organization's safety goals and objectives; otherwise, you will end up with a paper SMS that may pass a few SMS audits, but will provide no long-lasting risk mitigation value.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

What's the Difference Between Hazards and Risks in Aviation SMS

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 11, 2019 6:02:00 AM

Most Common Misunderstanding in Aviation Risk Management

We run across this time and time again in aviation risk management programs: safety management teams confuse hazards and risks, and consequently also confuses risks and consequences.

To be frank, misunderstanding the difference between these three things can have far reaching repercussions in your ability to practice risk management in your aviation safety management system (SMS).

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

3 Best Aviation SMS Risk Management Tools: Pros and Cons of Each

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 9, 2019 6:28:00 AM

What Are the 3 Best Aviation SMS Risk Management Tools?

Aviation safety management systems (SMS) have many required components that must be monitored and documented regularly. Much of this gathered data assists in enhancing operational processes by providing managers actionable, decision-making value.

To assist with this onerous task, aviation SMS risk management tools are fantastic additions to every SMS' repertoire – if you use them. Their "baked-in" risk management processes assure upper management that your aviation SMS has repeatable processes for best risk management results. Furthermore, these risk management processes are used by many aviation service providers, thereby providing higher levels of confidence in your organization's safety risk management (SRM) and safety assurance (SA) processes.

I’m often surprised at how many operations all but neglect "risk management tools in favor of simply going through the motions of managing their SMS using rudimentary aviation SMS tools, such as spreadsheets.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

4 Essential Tips for Management of Change in Aviation SMS

Posted by Tyler Britton on Apr 4, 2019 6:00:00 AM

Why Change Management in Aviation SMS Is Important

Management of change in aviation safety management systems (SMS) is a complex undertaking because so often it involves performing in-depth risk analysis and risk assessments on current and hypothetical

  • hazards,
  • equipment;
  • processes and procedures;
  • environments, and
  • one-off situations.

If change management is not performed thoroughly, organizations place themselves at the mercy of unexpected events, as well as the overlooked deterioration of existing risk controls due to the change.

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Topics: 2-Safety Risk Management

Site content provided by Northwest Data Solutions is meant for informational purposes only. Opinions presented here are not provided by any civil aviation authority or standards body.



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