NTSB Press Release

National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs


Hersman Delivered Kotaite Lecture on the Future of Aviation Safety

December 9, 2011

WASHINGTON - National Transportation Safety Board Chairman Deborah A. P. Hersman delivered the 8th Annual Assad Kotaite Lecture last evening at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Headquarters in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Hosted by the Montreal Branch of the Royal Aeronautical Society, the annual lecture is a tribute to Dr. Assad Kotaite, former Secretary General of ICAO and President of the Council of ICAO.

Chairman Hersman's talk, "Assuring Safety in Aviation's Second Century," highlighted the past, present, and future of accident investigation and addressed how accident investigation must adapt to play an even more pivotal role in creating civil aviation's safer and stronger future. Citing examples from recent accident investigations, Hersman said that it's clear that future accident investigations will depend far more on data and cooperation than in the past.

"While traditional tin-kicking will never go away, it is increasingly being joined by sophisticated data analysis," Hersman said. "In this era of dynamic growth and greater complexity, data is more important than ever."

Hersman applauded the agreement reached last year at the 37th ICAO Assembly to foster data sharing through the creation of the Global Safety Information Exchange. This information can be vital to investigators as they seek to learn what really happened and determine what can be done to improve safety.

"Data and cooperation is how the aviation community will maintain - and enhance - its strong safety record into the second century of powered flight," Hersman said.

A full text version of Chairman Hersman's prepared lecture is available at http://www.ntsb.gov/news/speeches_hersman.html.

 

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The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged with determining the probable cause
of transportation accidents, promoting transportation safety, and assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.