The paper seeks to outline the limitations and constraints in measuring operational safety in an aviation environment and provide an overview of the work being done at British Airways to overcome them.
The paper looks at the limitations and problems of trying to measure safety and operational risk. These limitations are then discussed along with methodologies to overcome them. The paper then describes some of the methods being tried within British Airways to provide useful measures of risk whilst trying to avoid the problems identified previously.
The findings of the work are that there are potential ways to generate useful safety metrics from incident reporting data and that the best use of risk data is to focus attention within the organisation onto areas of risk that need to be addressed.
The paper is based on practical work being undertaken at British Airways, and therefore, is demonstrated to be practical in an aviation environment.
The drive for operational efficiency in aviation means that aircraft operations are increasingly run against a backdrop of measures and targets. This in turn generates an increasing need and desire to include safety as a metric that can be tracked and monitored. This paper is focussed on meeting that desire and ensuring that any metrics developed avoid, as far as practical, the problems of measuring safety and using it to drive operational performance.
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