UND Aerospace earns FAA’s top ranking in safety (University Newsletter 04/14/16)
The John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences has received notification from the Federal Aviation Administration acknowledging UND as having an accepted Safety Management System (SMS).
In a letter dated March 9, 2016, the FAA stated, “The Federal Aviation Administration congratulates UND on this significant accomplishment in implementing a fully functional SMS in accordance with international requirements. Congratulations on your momentous achievement.”
SMS introduces an evolutionary process in system safety and safety management, and is a structured process that obligates organizations to manage safety with the same level of priority that other core business processes are managed. SMS is required of all air carriers by FAA regulation, and is becoming the accepted standard of safety in the mining, transportation and medical fields.
UND’s Director of Aviation Safety Dana Siewert said this was an organization-wide commitment encompassing flight training, aircraft maintenance, aviation academics, and unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).
“UND Aerospace has invested six years in the development and implementation of our Safety Management System,” Siewert said.
“To my knowledge we are the first FAA Part 141 flight training program to achieve this goal,” Siewert said. “This would not have been possible without the support of UND Aerospace Dean Bruce Smith, the FAA Flight Standards District Office in Fargo, and the personal commitment of many others within the organization.”
According to Dick Schultz, UND Director of Flight Operations, in addition to improved safety there are other benefits to having a safety management system.
“Being SMS compliant is a standard for nations that are members of the International Civil Aviation Organization,” Schultz said. “The John D. Odegard School provides flight training for several foreign countries, and one of the first questions our customers ask is, do you have an SMS program; this is a competitive market and being able to respond positively gives us a significant advantage.”