|Alaska Airlines flight. Photo: Alaska Airlines|
[Avionics Magazine 10-12-2016] The FAA has accepted Alaska Airlines’ and Horizon Air’s Safety Management System (SMS), capping a five-year effort to develop and refine a comprehensive, modern SMS for each airline.
A 2015 FAA rule requires all U.S. airlines to create a sophisticated SMS by January 2018. A safety management system integrates and embeds safety throughout the culture and business processes of an airline. Rather than rely on a separate safety manager or safety department to be in charge of keeping the airline safe, an SMS aims to empower employees at all levels to participate in and improve the process.
Alaska and Horizon fully implemented their SMS’ in 2012, while the FAA was still validating them.