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ARTICLE  FAA Releases Airport SMS Desk Reference

FAA Releases a supplemental desk reference to FAA Order 5200.11, FAA Airports (ARP) Safety Management System.


As the industry sits on pins and needles waiting for the much anticipated FAA guidance for SMS implementation, the recently released supplemental desk reference for Airport SMS should bring a collective sigh of relief.

The document is as thorough as any I recall from the FAA. This instructive document outlines the intended processes, forms, systems and AIP eligibility including the scope of items to be paid for by the airport sponsor. The key to the successful organizational change which SMS requires is quantifying the unknowns for those who have to implement the change.

This document goes a long way to providing clear guidance to those affected by FAA Order 5200.11 and demonstrates how safety information collected through 5200.11 bridges to the bigger National Aviation System SMS picture including Air Traffic and Aviation Safety organizations. Nice Job, FAA!

PS: Don’t lose site of the big picture. Long term sharing of SMS data requires consistency across SMS programs. The desk reference has several nuggets that can be pulled into your airport’s SMS. For more information on these and other tips to expedite your SMS implementation consider attending JDA’s hands-on Roadmap to Implementing and Operating Airport SMS in September in Orlando or contact JDA at

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