CAST issues another iteration of its intake and implementation of important Aviation Safety Data

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AINOnline’s expert writer wrote a most insightful article (see ↓ below) into one of the very technical documents involved in the Commercial Aviation Safety Team process (see↑ above). CAST is one of the FAA-industry efforts which have been credited to moving the aviation safety to future focus and enhancing safety. The direction of InFO14009 is to provide the FAA with further insight into the carriers’ processes.

This program has been credited with reducing commercial aviation fatalities between 1909 and 2008 by 83%. The goal of this Team is to reduce that measure by another 50% from 2010 to 2025. The backbone of CAST has been the input of data by the airlines, the joint analysis of those accumulated numbers (3 o’clock position on the above “clock”), development of solutions by the team, implementation of those recommendations by the individual carriers and the monitoring of what resulted from those and other actions through this continuous process.

InFO is a non-regulatory document and CAST is based on voluntary submission of data by the airlines to the regulators. InFO 14009 reflects an increased interest in both the carrier submission process and implementation actions (CAST S4XX).

The goal of the 1st CAST inquiry as to the front end of the process, presumably, is to assess the consistency in the development of information input; historically, for example, variations in reports in continuing airworthiness reports diminished the statistical basis for reviewing those records typically created on the shop floors. Likely the use of imprecise and/or non-standard language in describing the source of a problem is source of this request.

Reading the language of InFO 14009 and interpolating what was said as the reason for 2nd CAST refinement, there appears to be some doubt that the carriers are following the “prescription” created by the CAST Team. By asking for more specificity as alternate means of compliance, it appears to be some doubt whether the actual actions met the collective wisdom of the solution defined by the Team.

CAST has had exceptional success and any joint, cooperative and voluntary effort depends greatly on trust. What CAST does with its refined CAST S4XX, how it phrases its characterization of any differences between what was expected and what the airlines actually did and any “critiques” should be delicately drafted.

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