This Safety Enhancement (SE) reduces cargo-related accidents and incidents by requiring regulators to provide adequate oversight. The SE directs regulators to develop, enhance, and implement a system that ensures appropriate inspector coverage for all airlines, with particular emphasis on sub-contracting and leasing operations. This coverage includes assigning highly-experienced inspectors (appropriate for the operation) to those operators that require the most comprehensive oversight.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has implemented the Air Transportation Oversight System (ATOS), which is a risk-based System Safety process for surveillance of all air carriers that hold operations specifications issued in accordance with Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Parts 119 and 121. ATOS is designed to identify safety trends in order to spot and correct problems at their root cause before an accident occurs. It includes elements that specifically target outsourced training and air carrier oversight. FAA inspectors now look at an airline as a whole to see how the many elements of its operations:
Contract maintenance and training
interact to meet federal standards and implement industry best practices for safety.
By collecting and analyzing data on the many airline systems, FAA inspectors are better able to target areas for improvement. ATOS has enabled the FAA to create a targeted, more-effective surveillance plan for all air carriers, including those that carry cargo. The FAA also uses risk management processes to target resources in accordance with risk-based priorities. Information on the ATOS System is available on the FAA's website.
The FAA has also instituted a new Safety Inspector compensation and assignment system that ensures that all Principal Inspectors assigned to a Certificate Management Team (CMT) are highly experienced and fully qualified inspectors.