U.S. Helicopter Safety Team Calls for More Experts to Join the Effort

p>WASHINGTON D.C. – The United States Helicopter Safety Team (www.USHST.org) is calling for more helicopter safety experts to join their productive efforts to reduce accidents and fatalities in the industry.

The Implementation Committee of the USHST consists of members from industry and government who are focused on safety management, training, maintenance, and safety technology. They work together to develop educational support documents such as safety toolkits, safety bulletins, and essays to improve and increase safe helicopter operational practices. They also work on enhancing standard practices and requirements within the civil helicopter industry.

To date, USHST experts have created and distributed 18 safety bulletins for helicopter operators that concentrate on topics such as visibility, loss of control, CFIT, autorotations, training, safety management, and hazard identification.

Safety experts from the following organizations have participated in USHST efforts:  Air Methods, Bell Helicopter, Boeing Company, Bristow Academy, CAE/Flightscape, Dallas Police Dept., Embry-Riddle Aeronautical Univ., Federal Aviation Admin., Helicopter Association Intl., Life Flight of Maine, National Transportation Safety Board, Prism Helicopters, Robinson Helicopter Co., Sikorsky Aircraft, SkyTrac Systems.

The USHST also has begun a search for an industry co-chair to replace Bill Chiles, who recently retired as CEO of Bristow Group.  The USHST government co-chair is Jim Viola, FAA Manager, General Aviation and Commercial Division.

For information and criteria on how a helicopter safety expert can join the USHST effort, contact Steve Sparks via email at  steven.sparks@faa.gov.

The USHST and its parent organization, the International Helicopter Safety Team (IHST) promote safety and work to reduce accidents.  The IHST organization was formed in 2005 to lead a government and industry cooperative effort to address factors that were affecting an unacceptable helicopter accident rate.   

Prior to 2006, the number of worldwide civil helicopter accidents was rising at a rate of 2.5 percent per year.  Since 2006, the number of accidents worldwide has been decreasing by an annual rate of 2 percent. 

More information about the IHST, its reports, safety tools, and presentations from its 2014 safety symposium can be obtained at its web site at www.IHST.org and on the IHST Facebook page. 

Posted on Wednesday, August 13, 2014 (Archive on Monday, January 01, 0001)
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