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ATA - Voluntary Safety Programs Should Return to Airlines

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Air Transport Association Of America (ATA)
: 24 December, 2008  (New Product)
Airlines and pilot organizations should reinstate voluntary safety reporting programs to ensure the highest possible level of protection for the traveling public, AIA President and CEO Marion Blakey said Monday.
Recent decisions by several U.S. commercial air carriers to discontinue safety incident disclosure agreements, such as the Aviation Safety Action Program, are troubling, and the parties involved must put safety first and contractual disputes second, Blakey said.

“Programs like ASAP are vital tools in aviation safety and have played a large role in making the last several years some of the safest in history,” Blakey said. “These programs should be reinstated as soon as possible.”

The voluntary agreements encourage pilots, mechanics, controllers and others to report any incidents that concern the safety of aircraft operation. ASAP has been extremely successful in discovering and identifying safety issues before they lead to accidents, Blakey said.

The programs have been used by most airlines since the 1990s. When incident information is reported through a voluntary program, it is analyzed by a team comprised of airline, union and FAA representatives. The team looks for causes and trends and makes recommendations to improve safety.
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