By Staff Writer | November 1, 2007
STAT Medevac has won FAA approval to participate in an innovative safety program that shifts the regulator’s attention from enforcement actions to collaboration with the operator and its workers to address the cause of safety violations.
The West Mifflin, Pa.-based EMS operator is participating in the FAA’s Aviation Safety Action Program, an initiative launched in the early 1990s between mechanics at the Pittsburgh-based scheduled airline USAir and local FAA inspectors under which the agency essentially exchanges its ability to "write tickets" for regulatory violations for more candid information about why and how those violations occurred. Advocates argue such an exchange is essential to aviation shifting from regulatory compliance to genuine accident prevention. The program has since been expanded to use by airlines nationwide. STAT Medevac may be the first helicopter operator to participate.
The program requires forthright and swift reporting of safety and regulatory violations by FAA certificate holders. A cadre of company officials reviews the reports confidentially, circulating information deemed necessary for dissemination only after data identifying the reporter is excised. The company and FAA jointly determine whether the action was intentional, in which case it is not covered. If it is not, they jointly develop remedial actions, often with input from the reporting individual.