In the conclusion of our discussion of the 4 components of a Safety Management System, we will cover the fourth and arguably the most critical pillar of a SMS: Safety Promotion. You can re-read part 1, part 2 and part 3 at their individual links. Safety promotion is a complexly simple fundamental when discussing SMS. The basic tenant is this: an organization must promote safety as a core value with practices that support a positive safety culture. The complexity comes in the myriad of ways that organizations and ICAS, specifically, choose to promote these core values.
A positive safety culture is an informed culture in which people understand the risks and work continuously to identify and overcome hazards. A positive safety culture is a reporting culture in which people are encouraged to voice safety concerns, those concerns are analyzed, appropriate and consistent action is taken, and all involved know and agree on what is acceptable and unacceptable. A positive safety culture is a learning culture in which people are encouraged to develop and apply their skills and knowledge to enhance safety and safety reports are fed back to the culture to ensure that everyone learns from those reports. A positive safety culture is a just culture in which errors are understood, but willful violations are not accepted.
Here at ICAS, Safety Promotion is one of the most tangible elements of SMS. We use Ops Bull, Fast Facts, convention education sessions and Air Shows Magazine to ensure that the organization has an informed culture. We use our Safety Incident Procedures, our ICARUS reporting system and the ICAS Safety Creed to ensure that the organization has a reporting and a just culture. We use the ICAS ACE program, the Air Boss Academy and the Air Show Academy to ensure that our organization has a learning culture.
ICAS is quite proud of the work that has been done to change the culture of air show safety, and while we can say that we have seen marked improvements, a true SMS is an SMS that is never satisfied and is perpetually moving to improve existing processes.