Commercial

Rotorcraft Report: Can Accidents Be Reduced to Zero?

By Staff Writer | September 1, 2007

Offshore

COMMERCIAL/OFFSHORE

Can a helicopter operator cut accidents to zero? Bristow Group aims to find out.

The company suffered two fatal accidents in 2004 and 2005 that took six lives and wrecked two aircraft — a Bell Helicopter 412 in Nigeria and Bell 206 in the Gulf of Mexico.

That spurred senior management of the company that owns Air Logistics and Bristow Eastern Hemisphere to develop a program to change its culture. The objective is to "quit looking at this as ‘a dangerous business and stuff happens,’" Bristow President and CEO Bill Chiles told Rotor & Wing.

Dubbed Target Zero, the program aims to eliminate all accidents — air, ground, and industrial — by, among other things, engaging every employee from the top down to take a personal stake in speaking up for safe practices at the moment they see a potential problem.

"The No. 1 core value in the company is safety," Chiles said. "It’s just non-negotiable."

While the effort logically should generate financial returns by reducing lost time for personnel and aircraft and increasing productivity, that wasn’t a reason for adopting the program. "We did it because it’s intuitively the right thing to do."

The program, launched with a series of two-day workshops at Bristow sites around the world, is the latest evolution of safety advances undertaken by the offshore drilling and offshore helicopter communities.

Receive the latest rotorcraft news right to your inbox

Curated By Logo