Wings Magazine

Fatigue Risk Management event set to go

Aug. 30, 2011, Montreal - A unique gathering of more than 500 representatives from government, the air transport industry and the scientific community will meet this week at ICAO to address the growing issue of fatigue among safety-critical aviation personnel. The group will also discuss Fatigue Risk Management Systems (FRMS) as the alternative to the current practice of "flight and duty time limitations" for pilots and cabin crews.

August 30, 2011  By Carey Fredericks

"The only way to solve complex and interdependent aviation problems such as pilot fatigue is for all key stakeholders to share their respective knowledge, best practices and strategies. This is what this first FRMS Symposium is all about. We want to build on partnerships we have recently established and further align our efforts with all relevant parties towards a comprehensive, multidisciplinary solution," explained Nancy Graham, Director of the ICAO Air Navigation Bureau.

Earlier this month, ICAO, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the International Air Line Pilots' Association (IFALPA) released an FRMS Implementation Guide for commercial airline operators, in line with similar guidance for regulators. In June, the Council of ICAO adopted international standards for FRMS to ensure consistent implementation by airline operators and oversight by regulators. Pilot fatigue has increasingly been cited as a contributing factor in aircraft accidents.

Based on scientific principles, FRMS is a data-driven methodology that allows operators to manage the fatigue-related risks particular to their type of operations. Although the new ICAO FRMS requirements relate to flight and cabin crew, the methodology is broadly applicable to all safety-critical personnel including air traffic controllers and maintenance professionals.
The Symposium, on 30 and 31 August, will highlight newly-adopted ICAO Standards for FRMS and guidance material for operators and regulators, and the challenges they face. An FRMS Forum will follow on 1 and 2 September and will further examine the development, implementation and oversight of the systems.



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