Common Sense in a World of RegulationsA Presentation at the WAMEA Symposium “Generations” Jock McTavish - 3 Apr 2008
Common Sense • What is Common Sense? • Safety – our current status. • The Paradox of Near Perfection. • Regulations – examples of Common Sense. • The Generations – whence we’ve come.
Common Sense • Some think Common Sense an untrustworthy instinct. • Some think Common Sense is sufficient for decision. • Others grow their Common Sense by their experience and training. • I propose Common Sense is the foundation of “Standard Practice”.
Standard Practice • Initial education. • Awareness of References. • Hands on exposure to industry standards. • Attitude – the culture of aviation. • No-Fault – the openness to inspection. • Continued Training • Real Experience. • Accountability - Records and Logs. • Certification Responsibility
Common Sense Quotes “Common sense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom.” …Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Common Sense Quotes “Common Sense is that which judges the things given to it by other senses.” ... Leonardo da Vinci
Common Sense Quotes “Nothing is more fairly distributed than common sense: no one thinks he needs more of it than he already has” ... Rene Descartes
Common Sense Quotes “Common sense is genius dressed in its working clothes.” ... Ralph Waldo Emerson
Common Sense Quotes “The three great essentials to achieve anything worth while are, first, hard work; second, stick-to-itiveness; third, common sense.” ... Thomas Alva Edison
Common Sense Quotes “If you are looking for perfect safety, you will do well to sit on a fence and watch the birds; but if you really wish to learn, you must mount a machine and become acquainted with its tricks by actual trial.” …Wilbur Wright
Common Sense Quotes “I learned that danger is relative, and that inexperience can be a magnifying glass.” … Charles A. Lindbergh
Common Sense Quotes “Flying is inherently dangerous. We like to gloss that over with clever rhetoric and comforting statistics, but these facts remain: gravity is constant and powerful, and speed kills. In combination, they are particularly destructive.” … Dan Manningham, BCA Mag.
Common Sense Quotes “Of the major incentives to improve safety, by far the most compelling is that of economics. The moral incentive, which is most evident following an accident, is more intense but is relatively short lived.” … Jerome Lederer
Common Sense Quotes “There is an environment of people unwilling to admit their mistakes and move ahead. The attitude toward rule-making has been so curtailed that common sense recommendations now take years and years.” … James Hall, NTSB, 1996.
Common Sense Quotes “Complacency or a false sense of security should not be allowed to develop as a result of long periods without an accident or serious incident. An organization with a good safety record is not necessarily a safe organization.” …ICAO
Common Sense Quotes “Safety at sea is the business of all hands. It is difficult to talk about safety without repeating trite phrases everyone has heard many times.” … Merchant Seaman's Manual
Common Sense Quotes “Learning should be fun. If you don't have fun in aviation then you don't learn, and when learning stops, you die.” … Pete Campbell, FAA
3-Country - Civil Aviation - Airline OperationsTotal Accident Rates Per 100,000 Flight Hours: 2000 to 2004
3-Country - Civil Aviation - Airline OperationsTotal Fatality Rates Per 100,000 Flight Hours: 2000 to 2004
3-Country - Civil Aviation - General AviationTotal Accident Rates Per 100,000 Flight Hours: 2000 to 2004
3-Country - Civil Aviation - General AviationTotal Fatal Accident Rates Per 100,000 Flight Hours: 2000 to 2004
Where Next? The Paradoxes of Almost Totally Safe Transportation Systems • Only one disastrous event in 1,000,000 events • Don’t need more of same, we need new ideas. • Existing systems have diminishing returns. • New complexities induce new errors. • Human Error now the principle cause of accidents. • We must better understand ourselves. • Errors are to be understood, not fought.
Where Next? Perfect Safety is being approached • Dangerous Activity - 1 disaster in 1000events. • Mountain climbing • Regulated Activity - 1 disaster in 100,000 events. • Driving, Charter Flights, Chemical Industry • Ultra-safe Activity - 1 disaster in 1,000,000 events. • Airline, Railroad, Nuclear Industry • Ideal Activity – 1 disaster in 10,000,000 events. • Nothing has met this yet.
Where Next? Characteristics of Present Situation • Management Methods are Aging. • Over-Regulated and Highly Un-adaptive. • Systems nearing end of life-cycle. • Ultra-Safe System accidents are unlike the accidents of Safe Systems • Unpredictable • Reporting is ineffective • Situation political not scientific. • Research on Human Factors is not being applied. • Error Control is part of human behaviour.
Where Next? Management of Human Error. • Experience Makes the Difference • We learn from our mistakes. • Human error is not constant but dynamic. • Safety must become proactive. • Safety Management Systems are needed. • New goals, new tracking needed. “Experience is how we avoid making mistakes. Making mistakes is how we gain experience!”
Where Next? Human Contribution to Accidents – a new view • Identify the human factors that contributed to the error. • Determine how it made sense at the time. • Do not judge the error makers. • Understand how the error was made.
571.02 (1) Subject to subsection (2), a person who performs maintenance or elementary work on an aeronautical product shall use the most recent methods, techniques, practices, parts, materials, tools, equipment and test apparatuses that are (a) specified for the aeronautical product in the most recent maintenance manual or instructions for continued airworthiness developed by the manufacturer of that aeronautical product; (b) equivalent to those specified by the manufacturer of that aeronautical product in the most recent maintenance manual or instructions for continued airworthiness; or (c) in accordance with recognized industry practices at the time the maintenance or elementary work is performed.
571.10 Maintenance Release 2) Maintenance Release Record Keeping (a) A maintenance release applies only to the particular maintenance task or tasks to which it relates. Therefore: (i) it is acceptable to sign a maintenance release in respect of a single task or group of tasks, even if other work is outstanding on the aircraft, provided that the wording of the entry leaves no doubt as to the scope of work being certified; and (ii) it is the responsibility of the person signing a maintenance release to ensure that the technical record is correct in respect of the status of any outstanding task.
From “About Aviation Enforcement” “Transport Canada’s aviation enforcement policy recognizes the fact that “voluntary compliance” with the regulations is the most progressive and effective approach to achieving aviation safety. It is assumed that most people are rational, responsible, law abiding citizens in the own right and self-interest, and share an interest and commitment to the aviation community. However, for those individuals in the aviation community who are less motivated by such factors as common sense, personal and civil responsibility, pride and professionalism, and especially safety, they will become the focus for enforcement actions.”
COMMON SENSE + REGULATIONS = STANDARD PRACTICE
From Whence We’ve Come • I’ve been fortunate to inherit the libraries of two men that helped make aviation what it is in Western Canada. • Stan Green founded aviation training at SAIT, and Gerry Stauffer was one of his best students. • Both were men of practiced common sense. • Here are some photos and some common sense words from their collections.
Stan GreenHis 1954 replica Bleriot(that later flew the channel)and his SAIT studentsthat built it.
Gerry StaufferHis “best airplane” (Navion)and “best engine” (300 hp Lycoming)