Estimated reading time 3 minutes, 36 seconds.
The International Helicopter Safety Foundation (IHSF) has compiled data from its fifth annual survey of civil helicopter operators located in key regions around the world in order to gain a broader understanding of where crucial safety initiatives are being implemented. The IHSF received more than 1,900 responses to the survey from 112 different countries. Participation in the survey increased by 49 percent compared to a year ago.
The IHSF’s worldwide regional teams have analyzed more than 1,000 helicopter accidents and have concluded that the following eight areas offer the best opportunities to prevent helicopter accidents:
- Structured programs to fully comply with manufacturers’ recommended maintenance practices;
- A structured program for initial and recurrent training;
- The implementation of safety management systems (SMS);
- The implementation of manual Health & Usage Monitoring Systems (HUMS);
- Installation of wire strike prevention systems;
- The implementation of flight data monitoring (FDM) programs;
- The implementation of automated HUMS;
- Usage of night vision systems when warranted.
The 2019-20 IHSF survey looked at where these best practices were followed within specific segments of the helicopter industry and within regions around the world. Overall use of these eight “tools” in 2019 was 65 percent. This is an increase from 62 percent in 2018 and 59 percent in 2017.
In addition, the sectors of Helicopter Air Ambulance, Offshore/Oil operations and Law Enforcement have implemented the key recommended safety practices most comprehensively compared to other industry areas. The lowest implementation occurs in Personal/Private flying and in the TV/Radio News Gathering segment of the industry.