Australia's State Aviation Safety Program

3.3—Safety-Data-Driven Targeting of Oversight of Areas of Great Concern

The safety data collected by Australia's aviation agencies is regularly reviewed, analysed and reported for the purpose of identifying trends, emerging safety issues or assisting with addressing existing safety issues. A summary of how aviation agencies give effect to this follows.


Part of CASA's core function is the monitoring of safety performance and identification of safety related trends and risk factors, taking into account international safety developments. This includes risk review meetings at all levels of the organisation, including a safety review meeting involving all CASA executives during which domestic and international trends are discussed and decisions on changes to CASA's activities are made.

Safety Action: CASA will develop a systemic risk-based approach to surveillance activities which takes into account trend information, issues identified through surveillance information and information provided by individuals, industry or other agencies.


As part of its research function, the ATSB is continuing to develop its aviation safety database to allow for regular analysis of emerging safety issues.

The findings of ATSB investigations are recorded in its database, along with evidence tables and, for safety issues, a risk assessment and associated industry or ATSB safety action. The ATSB annually documents the risks identified by investigations and the associated safety actions undertaken in the previous year.

For the aviation occurrence data, the ATSB produces regular statistics reports documenting the frequency of incidents, serious incidents, accidents, and fatal accidents for various operational types.

Each occurrence recorded in the ATSB database is coded as one or more ‘occurrence types’. These occurrence types are used for quarterly analysis to identify emerging risks. When significantly more or less occurrences of a particular type are found from one quarter compared to the five year average, further investigation of the data is undertaken to discover why these differences have occurred. The ATSB has commenced systematically exploring each occurrence type for high capacity aircraft through a data mining exercise to provide an indication of where safety risks reside.

By 2013, it is planned that the ATSB will have a potential consequence level assigned to every occurrence in its database. Combining the potential consequence levels with frequency of occurrences will provide an occurrence risk index which can be used for tracking areas within aviation where trends for increasing critical or significant risks are present.

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Last Updated: 9 July, 2014