Safety Management System
As per the EASA Policy on Safety Management Systems, the main purpose of an SMS is to ensure that the organizations - in addition to assuring compliance with regulations - have the ability to identify the risks generated on flight safety and to mitigate such risks.
The SMS is a systematic and proactive approach to safety risk management that includes organizational structures, policies, processes and procedures. Risk management activities are at the heart of the SMS, including the hazards identification that may affect safety, risk assessment and mitigation. These activities are supported by safety assurance processes that verify the effectiveness of mitigations, monitor safety performance and change management.
Finally, safety promotion activities have a key role in implementing an effective SMS, ensuring personnel competency (training and experience) and safety information sharing within and outside the organization (communication).
EASA embedded the ICAO Standard and Recommended Practices in its own Management System regulation requirements, publishing the relevant acceptable means of compliance and guidance materials. In doing so, EASA followed an Integrated Management System approach which includes an independent compliance monitoring function.
This set of rules is currently applicable to all domains except for the Initial Airworthiness and certain areas of Continuing Airworthiness, in which amendments to the relevant EU Implementing Rules are expected to be published by next year.
This section provides information on organizations SMS regulations and reference documentation for the implementation of a safety management system.
Patrick Ky - EASA Executive Director “Aviation safety needs to be managed proactively by all actors. Safety management benefits the total aviation system by strengthening traditional risk control practices and ensuring safety risks are managed in a systematic way. Safety management allows room for innovation and flexibility: It is less about describing what to ‘do’ and more about how to ‘achieve safety’”.