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Continued Operational Safety, FAA, Manufacturing, Policy, Regulatory, Repair Stations, Safety Issues (non-airworthiness), Safety Management Systems, Strategic Planning

Safety Management Systems: One Giant Step …

Yesterday, the FAA’s rulemaking committee for Safety Management Systems (SMS) held its first meeting.  The group will assisting the FAA in developing the safety protocols of the future, which are expected to complement the NextGen system being developed by the Joint Planning and Development Office (JPDO).

On Feburary 12, the FAA Administrator issued an order creating the Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) for Safety Management Systems (SMS).  This Committee is charged with helping the FAA to develop the rules that will allow it to implement SMS regulations.  The major sectors that will be subject to SMS are represented on the Committee.

A Safety Management System (SMS) is the formal process of using System Safety practices in an organization’s everyday activities to control risk. SMS is an approach used throughout the aviation industry to meet System Safety standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).  ICAO has asked states to implement SMS programs and State Safety Programs. ICAO has published significant guidance on implementing SMS programs; so much guidance, though, that it must be reduced significantly to a level that will permit the publication of implementing reguations.

The FAA has stated that SMS represents the future of aviation oversight.

MARPA is represented on the SMS ARC by MARPA’s President, Jason Dickstein, and by Steve Szpunar of Heico.


About Jason Dickstein

Mr. Dickstein is the President of the Washington Aviation Group, a Washington, DC-based aviation law firm. He represents several aviation trade associations, including the Aviation Suppliers Association, the Aircraft Electronics Association, the Air Carrier Purchasing Conference, and the Modification and Replacement Parts Association. He also represents private clients drawn from the spectrum of the aviation industry.



  1. Pingback: Safety Management Systems: Time to Add Your Two Cents! « MARPA - August 18, 2009

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