MoU on aviation safety
A new memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Australia’s transport safety investigator and civil aviation safety regulator places a renewed emphasis on cooperation to improve aviation safety.
Mr Martin Dolan, the Chief Commissioner of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), and Mr Mark Skidmore, the Director of Aviation Safety, Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), signed the new MoU on 30 March 2015.
Mr Dolan said, ‘the MOU spells out how the two agencies will cooperate in the interests of improving aviation safety. We are working together - with the ATSB identifying safety issues through its investigations and findings, and CASA and the industry responding to those issues, as appropriate - to promote high standards of aviation safety.’
The MoU contains protocols for interactions between the two agencies. It covers notifications of accidents and incidents and procedures around access to evidence, exchange of information and initiating safety action.
Significantly, both agencies have reiterated a commitment to tell the other agency about matters they reasonably believe the other agency needs to know for safety purposes.
Mr Skidmore said, ‘It is important for the agencies to share safety information while recognising that there are limits to what the accident investigator can provide to the regulator. Where those limits exist, the ATSB makes the decision on what information is provided and CASA will only ask the ATSB for certain kinds of information if it is necessary in the demonstrable interests of safety. Of course, if CASA has information it believes relevant to an ATSB investigation, we will let the ATSB know.’
The MoU is for three years with an annual review of its content.