Aviation Issues: ADS-B, ATC and the NBAA’s Top Safety Focus Areas for 2018

Aviation Issues: ADS-B, ATC and the NBAA’s Top Safety Focus Areas for 2018

ADS-B News

The FAA issued Docket No.: FAA-2017-1194, Change to Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast Services which announces changes in ADS-B services, including Traffic Information Service Broadcast (TIS-B) for a small number of aircraft. The FAA is implementing a filter for certain ADS-B equipped aircraft broadcasting erroneous or improper information when the broadcast information could affect the safe provision of air traffic services. Any aircraft subject to the filter will not have its ADS-B information sent to an air traffic control (ATC) facility nor will the aircraft be a client for TIS–B services. Affected aircraft will continue to receive ATC services within radar coverage using secondary radar information.

The filter was implemented on affected aircraft beginning on January 2, 2018. For those aircraft that already have ADS-B installed, operators should check to ensure that the ICAO address code (Mode S code) broadcast by their ADS–B equipment matches the assigned ICAO address code for their aircraft. This ICAO address code (Mode S code) can be found at: http://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/NNum_Inquiry.aspx. Operators can verify what ICAO address code is being broadcast by their aircraft by visiting: https://adsbperformance.faa.gov/PAPRRequest.aspx. Owners and operators whose aircraft are affected by application of the ICAO address filter must contact the FAA Flight Standards Service ADS-B Focus Team at adsbfocusteam@faa.gov for guidance on corrective actions and coordination for removal of aircraft from the ICAO address filter.

Also, in one of its latest SatNav News publications, the FAA discussed some informative points and gave websites that may be of interest to operators regarding ADS-B:

The Airspace You Fly Reveals the Type of Equipment You Need – If you’re flying in Class A airspace, you will need a 1090 megahertz extended squitter (ES) transmitter. You will also need a 1090ES ADS-B Out transmitter if you operate outside the United States in airspace where ADS-B is required. Always flying below Class A, and not internationally where ADS-B is required? Then you have a choice between a 1090ES or a Universal Access Transceiver (UAT) transmitter. For a detailed look at the ADS-B requirements per airspace, go to www.faa.gov/nextgen/equipadsb/airspace/requirements.

The ADS-B Out Mandate Applies to Foreign Operators – The United States’ ADS-B-Out mandate will affect foreign aircraft operators. Starting January 1, 2020, all aircraft, including foreign-registered aircraft that operate in, or fly through the United States, must be equipped with ADS-B Out to operate in ADS-B required airspace in the United States. The ADS-B Out equipment must comply with the performance requirements found in 14 CFR sections 91.225 and 91.227.

And of course, don’t wait to get ADS-B installed. As you’ve probably read many times, the closer it gets to the deadline, the more inundated avionics shops will be with appointments. You may be unable to get a service date before the deadline, and you will not be allowed to fly in ADS-B required airspace until your aircraft is ADS-B Out equipped.

Status of ATC Controversy

In mid-February, the White House’s Fiscal Year 2019 budget was released and continues to support the administration’s view that moving the U.S. Air Traffic Control organization from the FAA to a “non-governmental, independent air traffic services cooperative” would make the system more “efficient and innovative.” The report also pointed out that the outcome would be “similar to successful efforts in many other developed countries.” If this transition does go through, the initial budget documents propose it could begin in Fiscal Year 2022.

Shortly after the release of the FY2019 budget, the Wall Street Journal published an editorial that proclaims that transferring the ATC system to the big airlines will improve efficiency and reduce cost for the traveling public. The article also attacked the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) for its work in stopping the efforts to privatize ATC; the NBAA, along with other GA organizations, responded quickly. A point-by-point rebuttal to the editorial was released by the NBAA (go to www.atcnotforsale.com/wsj-wrong to review). Also stated in the release, “The Journal failed to mention the more than 200 general aviation groups, more than 100 pilot-business leaders, mayors from every state and the majority of American citizens oppose turning over the ATC system to an airline-centric board.” NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen and AOPA President and CEO Mark Baker submitted a letter to the Wall Street Journal editors challenging their inaccurate claims that small communities won’t be harmed by ATC privatization and requesting the letter’s immediate publication.

The NBAA also commented that “the budget proposal released by the president is the administration’s blueprint for federal spending in the coming fiscal year,” and that “Congress still must take action to reflect its direction on the budget, including the reauthorization and funding of FAA, and other matters related to the nation’s infrastructure.” Bolen reiterated that “We must let our supporters on Capitol Hill know that business aviation continues to oppose HR 2997 or any other efforts to privatize ATC.” They are asking that even if you have contacted Congress before with your position, to please take a few minutes to contact them again.

NBAA Identifies Top Safety Focus Areas for 2018

The NBAA recently released its annual list of Top Safety Focus Areas – topics identified by the NBAA Safety Committee as primary risk-mitigation targets for all business aircraft operators. The safety priorities are intended to help promote safety-enhancing discussions and initiatives within flight departments and among owner-flown operations.

The 2018 NBAA Top Safety Focus Areas are below, with brief explanations pulled for the NBAA’s website:

  • Loss of Control Inflight (LOC-I) – LOC-I accidents result in more fatalities in business aviation than any other category of accident. The NTSB continues to target the issue on its 2017-2018 “Most Wanted” list of safety improvements, citing its linkage in nearly 50 percent of fixed-wing general aviation accidents from 2008 to 2014.
  • Runway Excursions – Nearly one-third of business aviation accidents are runway excursions, making this the most common type of accident. While often survivable, runway excursions remain a looming safety concern, creating an annual injury and damage toll estimated at $900 million industry-wide.
  • Single-Pilot Operation Safety – Accident rates are consistently higher for single-pilot operated aircraft than in aircraft flown with a dual-pilot crew. Single-pilot operations are more susceptible to task saturation, and when task saturation increases, so too does the number of errors.
  • Procedural Compliance – Professional aviators are duty bound to comply with federal, state, local and international regulations, company policies and manufacturer procedures. Yet challenges to procedural compliance remains a significant contributing factor in aircraft accidents and incidents.
  • Ground Handling and Taxi Incidents – The movement of vehicles and aircraft on non-controlled airport surfaces creates more damage to aircraft each year, as well as associated damage to vehicles, buildings and fixtures on the airport. While there are few fatalities associated with these collisions, the costs associated with aircraft repairs, including time out of service and diminution of value, are significant.
  • Distraction Management – Distractions result in a loss of situational awareness and continue to be the most pervasive “human” threat to safety in aircraft and other vehicles. Active distraction management of everything from task interruptions to personal electronic devices, is needed in the assessment of risk, as well as management of threats and errors associated with this hazard.
  • Scenario- and Risk-Based Training and Checking – Increased fidelity and quality of training is the mitigation strategy that will make the most positive impact in aviation safety. This new training and checking approach integrates Aeronautical Decision Making and problem solving via scenarios drawn from operator risk profiles.
  • Positive Safety Culture Promotion – Most safety data points to the fundamental importance of a positive safety culture, or the lack thereof. An open and non-punitive reporting environment is paramount to the success of any safety program.
  • Inflight Aircraft Collision Risk – Data has shown over the past year an increase in Traffic Collision Avoidance System Traffic Advisories (TAs) and Resolution Advisories (RAs) as overall demand for airspace continues to rise. Weather impacts traffic flow in busy terminal airspace, and the introduction of NextGen technologies, such as complex arrival and departure procedures, can create challenges.
  • Workforce Competency and Staffing – Business aviation is always in need of a workforce that can safely manage, maintain, service, design, manufacture, and fly its aircraft. Increased industry workforce needs have recently changed intra-industry workforce dynamics, requiring the business aviation community to attract and retain a current and future business aviation workforce. The business aviation workforce must be timely resourced and prepared with the knowledge, skills and experience to safely lead in business aviation’s dynamic environment.
  • Safety Data Sharing and Utilization – The collection, analysis, and sharing of narrative safety reports and recorded operations data is the basis on which the aviation industry is transitioning from reactive post-accident investigative safety management to proactive, and eventually predictive, safety management. It is imperative that the business aviation community contribute in these communities to further see return on the industry’s safety investments.

According to David Ryan, chairman of NBAA’s Safety Committee, “This list is the result of spirited collaboration between the dedicated men and women on the Safety Committee, who are committed to not only identifying potential hazards, but also through working with regulators, member companies and other industry stakeholders, to provide the business aviation community with the most effective mitigation tools and strategies.”

Each year, during its annual risk-assessment meeting, the committee reviews safety survey results; risk-based safety data; and qualitative input from industry and regulatory partners, other NBAA committees and association members. Following this data-driven review, committee members deliberate and develop a list of safety focus areas for the year.

In addition to the 2018 list, the Safety Committee continues to promote and focus on its five “foundations of safety,” considered the heart of the committee’s messaging, which are Professionalism, Safety Leadership, Technical Ex­cellence, Risk Management and Fitness for Duty.

For full descriptions and resources, visit www.nbaa.org/safety-focus.

About the Author

Leave a Reply