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European Strategic Safety Action Plan

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European Strategic Safety Action Plan (SSAP)

The European Strategic Safety Action Plan (SSAP) is a plan that was developed by the High-Level European Action Group for ATM Safety (High Level European Action Group for ATM Safety) following a survey of ATM safety in the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) area carried out in 2002. Actions identified in the SSAP were to be completed by 2006.

A survey, commissioned by AGAS, confirmed that the development of an ATM safety framework is not consistent across the ECAC area. A few States have well defined safety frameworks, whilst a small number of States are at a very early stage of assessing safety requirements and how those requirements might be met. The majority of States have started introducing ATM safety frameworks within the last 5 years; they have made progress but recognise that they have some way to go before their systems reach maturity and optimum efficiency. The AGAS study found that in some States there is a general lack of leadership and commitment that has led to a dearth of properly qualified safety experts, and insufficient opportunities for safety related training.

Taking into account the situation outlined above AGAS created ad-hoc working groups to investigate specific areas and propose actions to be taken. Work on runway safety, already in train within the EUROCONTROL Agency, and human resource work were also taken into AGAS’ considerations as was associated safety and human factors R&D. The Agency, on AGAS’ behalf, also commissioned a study to assess the maturity of the safety framework across the ECAC area.

From the work of its groups and the work undertaken by the Agency, AGAS decided that practical actions in the following areas would have the most direct impact on ATM Safety and were therefore of the Highest Priority:

High Priority Actions

  • Safety related human resources in ATM;
  • Incident reporting and data sharing;
  • Enforcement of ESARRs and monitoring of their implementation;
  • Awareness of safety matters;

The European Safety Programme (ESP) was established in 2006 to build on the work carried out in association with the SSAP.

Further Reading

For further information refer to the European Safety Plan website http://www.eurocontrol.int/articles/esp-high-level-activity-fields