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Use Helicopter Safety Enhancements to Reduce Accidents

Posted 2 years 53 days ago ago by Admin

As I’m writing this column, I’m sitting in the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, Texas. Today is the last day of HAI Heli-Expo 2022, and what a great show it was. The energy of Heli-Expo 2022 was amazing as people from around the globe descended upon Dallas to share experiences and gain insight into the new and exciting opportunities and equipment available in the industry today.

A common theme at Heli-Expo 2022 was continued improvements to safety within the global vertical lift community. Industry forums with regulators such as the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) were moderated by Helicopter Association International (HAI) staff that included Jim Viola, HAI president and CEO.

Non-regulatory organizations were also in attendance, including the European Helicopter Association, Helicopter Association of Canada, among others. 

The overarching theme within Heli-Expo 2022 was global safety, supported by the Vertical Aviation Safety Team (VAST). The messaging supported data-driven recommendations provided by the United States Helicopter Safety Team (USHST) and their helicopter safety enhancements (H-SEs) which may be found at www.ushst.org.

Within the messaging on improving safety was a realization that many of our accidents are found to have causal factors pointing directly back at the flight crew. Poor aeronautical decision-making (ADM) was found as an initial link in the error chain that led to many accidents or incidents.

H-SEs were developed by taking accident data, defining the accident’s root cause, and outlining training procedures to combat such events from repeating. 

Let’s look at a few H-SEs:

  • H-SE 30 Development of Airman Certification for Rotorcraft

  • H-SE 37 Progressive Approaches to Autorotation Training

  • H-SE 127 Recognition and Recovery from Spatial Disorientation

When developing new or improving aging courseware, look at the H-SE’s available via the USHST website. Members of the USHST have done much of the research work for you on the causal factors contributing to accidents. This information provides a fantastic opportunity to glean knowledge of accident causes and develop training initiatives that combat such events from being repeated.

Preventing future accidents through education is an easy path to success. Providing factual, detailed information from credible sources removes the subjectivity surrounding such events. This simple combination of factual commentary and practical exercise may gain the attention of those that need this information the most.  

The cost of an accident is often measured in terms of dollars and cents. The ability to stop an accident from occurring by simply teaching helicopter safety enhancements derived from experts reviewing factual accident data and causes is priceless!

About Randy: 
Randy Rowles has been a FAA pilot examiner for 20 years for all helicopter certificates and ratings. He holds a FAA Gold Seal Flight Instructor Certificate, NAFI Master Flight Instructor designation, and was the 2013 recipient of the HAI Flight Instructor of the Year Award. Rowles is the owner/president of Helicopter Institute.

Visit Helicopter Institute's website for more information
Website: www.helicopterinstitute.com
YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCt4y..



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