The Potential of Technologies to Mitigate Helicopter Accident Factors – An EHEST Study

7 October 2014 – Technology is not high on the list of accident / incident factors, as it is merely the lack of technology that may have led to an accident. Technology provides a variety of solutions that can contribute to prevent various types of accidents or to increase survivability. The EHEST’s Specialist Team (ST) Technology was created with the objective to assess the potential of existing and emerging technologies to mitigate accident factors.

The ST Technology work consists of listing technologies and linking them with accident causes and contributing factors, and then to assess the potential of those technologies to mitigate safety issues. The top 20 safety issues have been identified from EHEST accident analyses. To assess the potential of technologies the team has developed a tool, the so-called technology matrix. The work continued by identifying individual technologies and rating those technologies.

The technology matrix includes 145 technologies, of which 93 have been rated. There are 15 ‘highly promising’ technologies (that jointly can potentially mitigate 11 of the top 20 safety issues), and 50 that are ‘moderately promising’. Five technologies are highly promising for three or more safety issues.

The industry is highly recommended to channel their technological development in line with the results of the study. The regulatory side should find ways to improve safety by adopting the technologies. Researchers and universities are encouraged to concentrate their efforts on developing the lacking technologies and the technologies which have a low Technology Readiness Level.

Download the study here.

Category Data and statistics, Featured News, General, Technology

IAA General Aviation Safety Survey

The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) conducted a survey of general aviation in Ireland to assist the IAA develop safety policy and to effectively target safety promotion in the future.

The survey can be viewed at : General Aviation survey

the results are published below:

Category Other sources

Analysis of 2000-2005 European Helicopter accidents

EHEST has released its final analysis report on helicopter accident analyses occurred in EASA Members States between 2000 and 2005.  The report presents the results of more than 300 accidents where a final investigation report from the Accident Investigation Board has been issued.

EHEST Brochure – accident report [UK]

The European Helicopter Safety Analysis Team (EHSAT) analyses accident investigation reports and, from this analysis, identifies suggestions for safety enhancement. EHSAT regional teams have been formed in Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. It is estimated that these States account for more than 90 % of the helicopters registered in Europe. The analysis results of the different regional teams are consolidated on a European level.

The top three Standard Problem Statements identified were:
• Pilot judgment & actions
• Safety Culture/Management
• Ground duties

The use of the HFACS taxonomy by the EHSAT provided a complementary perspective on human factors. In 78 % of the accidents, at least one HFACS factor was identified. In most accidents unsafe acts or preconditions for unsafe acts were identified. In fewer accident reports supervisory or organisational influences were identified. The potential
to identify such factors is very much dependent on the depth of the accident investigation performed and the accident data available.

For both the SPS and HFACS taxonomies, different patterns were observed for Commercial Air Transport, Aerial Work and General Aviation. Section 4.4 provides an overview of the factors for the different type of operations identified at the lowest level of the taxonomy.
Most Intervention Recommendations (IRs) were identified in the three areas of:
• Flight Operations & Safety Management/Culture
• Training/Instructional
• Regulatory/Standards/Guidelines

This efforts to prepare a European wide accident analysis of helicopter accidents was unique and is now serving to derive work priorities for the implementatino teams.

January 2012– EHEST has released the translated versions of its final analysis report on helicopter accident analyses occurred in EASA Members States between 2000 and 2005.  The report presents the results of more than 300 accidents where a final investigation report from the Accident Investigation Board has been issued.

EHEST_Analysis_Report_FR_2011 (FRENCH)

EHEST_Analysis_Report_ES_2011 (SPANISH)

EHEST_Analysis_Report_DE_2011 (GERMAN)


Category Featured News

Human factors in helicopter accidents: results from the analysis

In 2008, the European Helicopter Safety Analysis Team (EHSAT) of the EHEST has analysed 186 helicopter accidents reported by the Accident Investigation Boards (AIBs) within timeframe 2000-2005 and State of occurrence located in Europe. EHSAT analyses are based on a standard method adapted by the Joint Helicopter Safety Analysis Team (JSAT), the analysis team of IHST, from the US Commercial Aviation Safety Team (CAST).

The European team has included HFACS to enrich the analysis of human factors involved in the accidents.

The paper presents this European helicopter safety initiative and focuses on human performance related analysis results. It concludes by presenting the benefits of using HFACS in addition to the Standard Problem Statements (SPS) analysis taxonomy by the JSAT. EHESTfor65thAHSForum.

Category Reports and analysis

IHST Canadian Team – Year 2000 Summary report and flight Hour data analysis

This report was prepared by the Canadia JSAT and presents a summary of the analysis of 52 accidents (51 civil and one Canadian Forces) that occurred in the calendar year 2000. Intervention recommendations are provided based on the frequency of intervention categories being cited for each standard problem statement. This approach will allow the Canadian Joint Helicopter Safety Implementation Team (CDNJHSIT) to focus it work on the most significant areas requiring intervention. In addition, flight hour data from years 2000-2008 is also included to allow for the determination of annual accident rates.

Canadian 2000 report

Category Data and statistics, Other sources