National Academies Press: OpenBook

Research Roadmap on Safety Issues (2020)

Chapter: 6. Conclusions

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Page 27
Suggested Citation:"6. Conclusions." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Research Roadmap on Safety Issues. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25957.
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Page 27
Page 28
Suggested Citation:"6. Conclusions." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Research Roadmap on Safety Issues. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25957.
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Page 28

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Research Roadmap on Safety Issues 22 construction, based on best practices by the industry and latest tools and technology available. (Synthesis)  Tool for Sharing Experience on Successful Airport Safety Initiatives and Programs (Focus Area: Safety Management; Sub-topic: Promotion) - Based on research of best practices by the industry, plan and design a tool to support sharing of experiences among airports. The tool should be user friendly for those posting their experiences, as well as for those searching for best practices related to airport safety. (Research)  Development of an Approach to Update FAA/ICAO Collision Risk Model (Focus Area: Runway Safety - Flight); Sub-topic: Risk Management) - Develop a new collision risk model and tool to estimate the risk of aircraft collisions with obstacles during the final approach to landing. (Research)  Guide for Effective Airfield Self-Inspections (Focus Area: Movement Area - Surface); Sub- topic: Assurance) - Research effective methods and provide information regarding innovative ways to improve the accuracy and efficiency of airfield inspections. (Research) 6. Conclusions The systems that interact and enable the operation of an airport are complex with numerous hazards always present. Safety as a topic of airport research is unique in its reach and impact. Safety touches all elements of airport operations and has a significant influence on the overall performance of the aviation industry. Historically, most airport safety processes have been reactive in nature; that is safety processes were generally developed to provide effective responses to undesired events, sometimes catastrophic, that occurred in the past. With the introduction and early adoption of SMS into the airport industry, safety processes are shifting from this reactive posture to a more proactive way of doing the business while continuously improving safety. This shift in approach will drive safety research in the near and long-term future. Evidence of this shift was revealed in the development of this Research Roadmap on Airport Safety Issues. Input from the industry clearly indicated that more detailed guidance on, and the sharing of lessons learned regarding the elements and processes falling under the SMS umbrella is needed. In addition to SMS, airports continue to ask for practical assistance in solving the challenges they face in protecting the people who work and use the airport, in preserving airport facilities and equipment, and in keeping violations and actions that endanger normal operations to a minimum. Such requests for assistance and improvement are associated with common airport practices, such as airside driving, the movement of people, and the effective and rapid response to emergencies. While the processes for these evolutions are generally very mature, the quest for continuous improvement remains strong and the desire for innovative approaches to preventing losses endures. Given that airport safety is focused on processes that interact within the numerous airport systems, there are few emerging issues that will drive safety research; rather, safety research will focus on the application and improvement upon existing safety processes to ensure emerging technologies and

Research Roadmap on Safety Issues 23 operational approaches are addressed in effective ways to reduce risks and aid in maximizing operational effectiveness. This roadmap is not an end-all, and is not intended to be a definitive and complete list of potential research topics. That said, the roadmap can and should be a catalyst for innovative thinking on airport safety, serving as a guide for future research projects that will serve the airport industry and its stakeholders in a positive way for the next several years.

Next: Appendix A Literature Review Summary of Findings »
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With the airport industry's introduction and early adoption of safety management systems (SMS), safety processes are taking on a more proactive way of doing the business while continuously improving safety. This shift in approach will drive safety research in the near and long-term future.

The TRB Airport Cooperative Research Program'sACRP Web-Only Document 50: Research Roadmap on Safety Issues reveals evidence of this shift, with input from the industry clearly indicating that more detailed guidance on, and the sharing of lessons learned regarding the elements and processes falling under the SMS umbrella, is needed.

Two supplemental files accompany this web-only document, including a Safety Research Topics Database and a Visual Research Roadmap.

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