Everything You Need to Know About IATA’s Six-Point Strategy

Safety in the air: IATA
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What is the IATA?

The International Air Transport Association – or IATA – is of vital importance in the world’s air transportation, and its members represent 82% of the world’s aviation traffic; making them one of the most significant organizations in international shipping. Among other things IATA is involved with issues having to do with the integrity of all aircrafts, the welfare of passengers, crewmembers and cargo, as well as the creation and enforcement of many safety regulations.

With over 280 members from 120 nations, IATA works diligently to ensure the safety of all flights traveling around the world. They use a comprehensive approach to handle any safety issue that may arise. It is known as The Six Point Safety Strategy, and it helps to keep more than 100,000 flights safely in the air every day.

Familiarize Yourself With the Six-Point Strategy

As the name suggests, IATA’s key safety strategy focuses on six main areas. To create these, the IATA coordinated with some of their Strategic Partners, such as the Safety Group (SG) and the Operations Committee (OPC).

#1. Reduce Operational Risk

Operational risks are the primary concern for any airline, as this can mean grounded flights and serious safety concerns for passengers and crewmembers. IATA performs in-depth analysis and assessments to help address issues such as:

  • Cabin Safety. Before takeoff, the attendants on board will ask you to please turn off all electronics and put up tray tables. They also perform a demonstration on what to do in the unlikely event of a crash. It’s one example of cabin safety, but there is much more to involved than proper safety protocol. IATA works to help prevent and reduce incidents or accidents in the cabin.
  • Loss of Control In-Flight (LOC-I). When the captain and crew members lose control of the aircraft and are unable to keep the plane on its designated course, it is called a Loss of Control In-Flight. LOC-I is one of the top contributors to fatal accidents around the world, which is why enforcing regulations and assessments to help prevent this is high on IATA’s list of priorities. Loss of control can occur for different reasons, including engine failure or weather conditions, or stalls, and is one of the most intricate aspects of aircraft safety regulation.
  • Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT). Unlike a LOC-I risk, a CFIT refers to an accident where the aircraft collided with some type of terrain, water, or obstacle, without the flight crew losing control of the plane.
  • Runway Safety. To help a flight go smoothly from beginning to end, the flight crew must follow regulations regarding runway safety. It remains the highest priority on IATA’s lists, as it represents a considerable risk to aviation safety.
  • Fatigue Management. When onboard an aircraft, for example on a domestic passenger flight, it is the responsibility of the crew members to stay alert and focused. Fatigue is now recognized as a potential safety hazard. Since it cannot be wholly eliminated, especially on long flights, the IATA has implemented management tools to help address the possible implications.
  • Mid-air Collision. In-flight crashes do occur, and although they are quite rare, the resulting damage can be disastrous. To help take care of any risk of mid-air collision during a flight, IATA calls on Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) to issue resolution advisories.

#2. Enhance Quality and Compliance

To continue ensuring and enhancing security throughout the world, the IATA uses an Operational Safety Audit, known as IOSA, to cover internationally recognized aviation policies, processes, and procedures.

The Audit programs include:

  • IATA Safety Audit for Ground Operations (ISAGO): This applies to ground handles and all aviation operations that occur on land.
  • IATA Standard Safety Assessment (ISSA): This audit works alongside the general IOSA to further promote operational safety.
  • IATA Fuel Quality Pool (IFQP): The IFQP consists of airlines that share crucial information related to fuel, such as inspection reports and workloads at different locations.
  • IATA Drinking-Water Quality Pool (IDQP): Different airlines around the world work together to audit the quality of the potable water throughout the world.
  • IATA De-Icing/Anti-Icing Quality Control Pool (DAQCP): When freezing rain hit the surface of an aircraft, but do not freeze right away, it causing small protrusions that look a bit like horns. This occurrence is called icing. The DAQCP oversees de-icing regulations and services for airlines around the globe.

#3. Advocate for Improved Aviation Infrastructure

This strategy is relatively straightforward and allows the IATA to implement regulations that help enhance ATM infrastructures.

#4. Support Consistent Implementation of Safety Management System

The Safety Management System (SMS), helps to support the IOSA with the Six-Point Strategy. The framework offers the ability to focus on monitoring safety performance, analyzing and disseminating information, and promoting safety and facilitation in aviation.

#5. Support Effective Recruitment and Training

A tree is only as sound as its roots, and a team is only as powerful as the people working together. IATA considers recruiting and training aviation professionals a safety priority, and offers IATA training and licensing for Air Traffic Control (ATC), Ground Handling Agents (GHA), and more. They offer trainees and students in-company and classroom training courses to help ensure they are fully equipped to perform their duties.

#6. Identify and Address Emerging Safety Issues

As new developments arise in aviation, IATA must address any safety concerns that might be associated with it. Also, new technology means understanding how it could interact with the plane’s navigation and what should and shouldn’t be allowed within the cabin of an aircraft. The IATA uses a program they call the Global Aviation Data Management (GADM), to help monitor emerging safety issues. It currently includes information from over 470 organizations, assisting the IATA to identify any global safety concerns.

In recent years, regulations in lithium batteries, portable electronic devices, and even remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) have been the responsibility of the IATA.

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