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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-14-106
Details
Synopsis: On March 30, 2013, at 2320 Alaska daylight time, a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, N911AA, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search and rescue (SAR) flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. The airline transport pilot, an Alaska state trooper serving as a flight observer for the pilot, and a stranded snowmobiler who had requested rescue were killed, and the helicopter was destroyed by impact and postcrash fire. The helicopter was registered to and operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety (DPS) as a public aircraft operations flight under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) prevailed in the area at the time of the accident. The flight originated at 2313 from a frozen pond near the snowmobiler’s rescue location and was destined for an off-airport location about 16 mi south.
Recommendation: TO FORTY FOUR STATES, THE COMMONWEALTH OF PUERTO RICO AND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Arrange for an audit of the safety management system implemented in response to Safety Recommendation A-14-105 to be conducted every 3 years by an outside organization.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Open - Await Response
Mode: Aviation
Location: Talkeetna, AK, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: ANC13GA036
Accident Reports: ​Crash Following Encounter with Instrument Meteorological Conditions After Departure from Remote Landing Site Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter AS350 B3, N911AA
Report #: AAR-14-03
Accident Date: 3/30/2013
Issue Date: 11/24/2014
Date Closed:
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: Commonwealth of Kentucky (Open - Await Response)
Commonwealth of Massachusetts (Open - Await Response)
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (Open - Acceptable Response)
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (Open - Acceptable Response)
Commonwealth of Virginia (Open - Await Response)
District of Columbia (Open - Await Response)
State of Alabama (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Alaska (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Arizona (Closed - Acceptable Action)
State of Arkansas (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of California (Open - Await Response)
State of Colorado (Closed - Reconsidered)
State of Connecticut (Open - Await Response)
State of Delaware (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Florida (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Georgia (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Illinois (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Indiana (Open - Await Response)
State of Iowa (Closed - Reconsidered)
State of Kansas (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Louisiana (Open - Await Response)
State of Maine (Open - Await Response)
State of Maryland (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Michigan (Closed - Acceptable Action)
State of Minnesota (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Mississippi (Open - Await Response)
State of Missouri (Open - Await Response)
State of Montana (Closed - Reconsidered)
State of Nebraska (Open - Await Response)
State of Nevada (Open - Await Response)
State of New Hampshire (Open - Await Response)
State of New Jersey (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of New Mexico (Open - Await Response)
State of New York (Open - Await Response)
State of North Carolina (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of North Dakota (Open - Await Response)
State of Ohio (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Oklahoma (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Oregon (Open - Await Response)
State of South Carolina (Open - Await Response)
State of South Dakota (Closed - Reconsidered)
State of Tennessee (Open - Await Response)
State of Texas (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Utah (Open - Acceptable Response)
State of Washington (Closed - Reconsidered)
State of West Virginia (Open - Await Response)
State of Wisconsin (Open - Await Response)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: State of Alabama
Date: 5/4/2015
Response: Although it is unclear whether ALEA has a formal SMS program in place (as discussed above), we are encouraged to learn that the agency is looking into having audits conducted on a regular basis by an outside organization. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the agency’s progress and completion of the recommended action, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Alabama
To: NTSB
Date: 2/9/2015
Response: -From J. Spencer Collier, Secretary, Alabama Law Enforcement Agency: Although ALEA Aviation has incorporated outside training and recommendations from several other agencies, there has not been an official audit from an outside agency specifically designed for Safety Recommendation A-14-105. In accordance with NTSB guidelines, ALEA Aviation will be pursuing the implementation of this recommendation in the near future.

From: NTSB
To: State of Alaska
Date: 3/30/2015
Response: We note that, once your SMS is fully developed and operational, you will arrange for an outside organization to audit it every 3 years, as recommended. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding your progress, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Alaska
To: NTSB
Date: 12/16/2014
Response: -From Gary Folger, Commissioner, Department of Public Safety: Alaska Department of Public Safety is committed to continually improve the SMS system by developing internal functionality that is customized to the diverse missions that Alaska DPS encounters. Working with the vendor of the software, we will devise benchmarks that will enable us to track and monitor progress in the coming years. We will explore external audit options for this program as we get closer to the three year mark.

From: NTSB
To: State of Arizona
Date: 1/18/2018
Response: We note that, in 2014, the Public Safety Aviation Accreditation Commission (PSAAC) conducted a full external aviation safety audit of the AZDPS, and that the AZDPS has contracted with an outside organization to conduct external audits of the AZDPS’s SMS program every 3 years, with the first audit scheduled for the end of 2017. We further note that the AZDPS is in the process of applying for full PSAAC accreditation, which will include a pre-audit and formal certification audit. Because the AZDPS intends to arrange for regular auditing of its SMS program, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified CLOSED--ACCEPTABLE ACTION.

From: State of Arizona
To: NTSB
Date: 9/13/2017
Response: Terry S. Miyauchi, Aviation Administrator, Arizona Department of Public Safety: The purpose of this letter is to respond to your safety recommendations letter addressed to Governor Doug Ducey, dated August 3, 2017. In that letter, NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13-21 (meteorological evaluation towers) andA-14-100 through 106 (search-and-rescue flight) were provided to the State of Arizona. The Arizona Department of Public Safety (AZDPS) conducts flights across the entire state of Arizona, to include areas where meteorological towers have been erected. Approximately 25% percent of all flights for AZDPS and the State are in support of search and rescue operations. We value the goal of aviation safety as the number one priority for all of our aviation activity and your recommendations are well received. We offer the following specific responses to each of your NTSB recommendations: The AZDPS last underwent a full external aviation safety audit in August of2014 by AIS Gallegher. AIS Gallegher is an aviation insurance underwriter and utilized the Public Safety Aviation Accreditation Commission (PSAAC) for the audit. AZDPS received high marks with no major discrepancies noted. Whereas the last audit was 3 years ago to date, it is important to point out the following external consultant and planned audit information: This past year, the AZDPS contracted with the Delta P Company and specifically Dr. Dudley Crossen to provide external consultation in aeromedical, aerospace physiology and aviation human factor issues. The service provides ride-along observation and direct external feedback to the management. On-site visits are currently scheduled two times a year, with the next visit scheduled for the Fall of 2017. As a result of NTSB Recommendation A-14-106, AZDPS intends to have Delta P and specifically Dr. Crosson conduct a full external audit of the AZDPS SMS by year end, 2017. It is additionally important to point out that the AZDPS is in process of preparing for application to full PSAAC accreditation in search-and-rescue, fire-fighting and law enforcement operations. The process will include a pre-audit and formal certification audit, both by external sources in the near future. If appropriate AZD PS will conduct external audits of the SMS minimally every three years.

From: NTSB
To: State of Arizona
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Arizona on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Arizona on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Arkansas
Date: 12/15/2017
Response: We understand that, although the ASP’s SMS program was audited by an outside organization shortly after its implementation in 2013, no additional audits have been conducted since. We believe that ongoing reviews are vital to ensuring the program’s effectiveness, improvement, and success. Therefore, we encourage the ASP to conduct the recommended audits at least every 3 years. Pending confirmation from you that the ASP intends to take this action, Safety Recommendation A 14 106 is classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Arkansas
To: NTSB
Date: 8/29/2017
Response: -From Asa Hutchinson, Governor: Arkansas has been audited by an outside agency, and the state safety management system complies with NTSB recommendations.

From: NTSB
To: State of Arkansas
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Arkansas on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Arkansas on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of California
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of California on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of California on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Colorado
Date: 1/3/2018
Response: We note that the Colorado Army National Guard operates helicopters to conduct SAR missions, and that the Colorado State Police does not operate helicopters. We believe that all air operations could benefit from the safety improvements specified in these recommendations, and we urge the state of Colorado to make the recommended safety improvements to all its air operations. However, because these recommendations were specifically aimed at public operators who conduct helicopter SAR operations, Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106 are classified CLOSED--RECONSIDERED.

From: State of Colorado
To: NTSB
Date: 9/13/2017
Response: -From John W. Hickenlooper, Governor: We have enacted recommendation A-13- 21 through legislation, when we signed House Bill 14-1216 into law in 2014. This bill requires safety markings for certain towers over 50 feet in height that are located in unincorporated areas of the state, and has been incorporated into Colorado Revised Statutes (CRS) section 43-10-117. Specifically, CRS 43-10- 117 requires: (2) Where the appearance of a tower is not otherwise governed by state or federal law, rule, or regulation, any tower over fifty feet in height that is located outside the boundaries of an incorporated city or town on land that is primarily rural or undeveloped or used for agricultural purposes must be marked and painted or otherwise constructed to be visible in clear air during daylight hours from a distance of not less than two thousand feet. Towers must also comply with the following additional requirements: (a) A tower must be painted in equal alternating bands of aviation orange and white, beginning with orange at the top of the tower; (b) One marker ball must be attached to the top third of each outside guy wire; and (c) Guy wires must have a seven-foot- long safety sleeve at each anchor point that extends from the anchor point along each guy wire attached to the anchor point. (3) Any tower that was erected prior to August 6, 2014, must be marked as required by the provisions of this section within one year of August 6, 2014. Any tower that is erected on or after August 6, 2014, must be marked as required by this section at the time it is erected. The Colorado Army National Guard operates helicopters that are used in search and rescue missions, and they report that compliance with all recommendations as outlined in your document of August 3, 2017, as it pertains to the operation of helicopters. Finally, the Colorado State Patrol currently implements recommendation A-14-101, using procedures and avionics that allow for up-to-date weather information and assistance with flight risk assessment decisions. While they do not operate helicopters in search and rescue missions, they are considering implementing recommendations A-14-100, A-14-105, and A-14-106 following an independent and unrelated safety audit they are conducting. Once completed, we will incorporate regulations that are in compliance with the NTSB recommendation, at a minimum. Again, thank you for your correspondence regarding this issue. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to my Office should you have any further questions.

From: NTSB
To: State of Colorado
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Colorado on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Colorado on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Connecticut
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Connecticut on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Connecticut on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Delaware
Date: 5/15/2015
Response: We are pleased to learn that you are working to qualify for accreditation by the ALEA and that your SMS will be audited on a recurring basis once you are accredited. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding your progress and completion of the recommended action, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Delaware
To: NTSB
Date: 12/8/2014
Response: -From Colonel Nathaniel McQueen, Jr., Superintendent, Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security, Division of State Police: The Delaware State Police Aviation Section plans to conduct ALEA Accreditation during 2015. The accreditation process will include an audit of the Safety Management System and will occur on a recurring or re-accreditation basis. In addition, the section is already utilizing AIG Aerospace Insurance (our insurance provider) to provide outside audits of the sections policies, procedures, safety, operations, maintenance, and facilities on a recurring basis.

From: NTSB
To: District of Columbia
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the District of Columbia on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the District of Columbia on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Florida
Date: 5/4/2015
Response: We note that, once the FWC has implemented its SMS, it plans to arrange for the recommended recurring audit. Pending completion of this action, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Florida
To: NTSB
Date: 1/30/2015
Response: -From Colonel Curtis Brown, Director, Division of Law Enforcement, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission: Upon completion of the SMS program, the FWC aviation unit will request both an internal and external audit. The external audit will be conducted by other local law enforcement aviation members and through ALEA. FWC will also implement the recommendation for an external audit every three years.

From: NTSB
To: State of Georgia
Date: 3/6/2015
Response: We note that you are making arrangements for an outside organization to conduct audits of your SMS every 3 years, as recommended. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding your progress, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Georgia
To: NTSB
Date: 12/8/2014
Response: -From Colonel Mark McDonough, Commissioner, Department of Public Safety: The Division will have used the SMS program for three years in January 2015. The Division is in the process of locating a private vendor to conduct a Safety Management System audit after January of 2015.

From: NTSB
To: State of Illinois
Date: 4/26/2017
Response: We note that you intend to re-examine this recommendation once your state’s budget has been approved. In the meantime, pending completion of the recommended action, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 remains classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Illinois
To: NTSB
Date: 1/25/2017
Response: -From Leo P. Schmitz, Director, Illinois State Police: Response: The ISP AOB has recommended the ISP participate in the Airborne Law Enforcement Association (ALEA) Accreditation program. This accreditation program is "designed to objectively evaluate and certify a law enforcement air unit's overall compliance with safety and efficiency standards as developed and adopted by the ALEA." This program provides audits every three years. Update: Currently, the state of Illinois does not have a budget in place. Without a budget, the Air Operations program cannot complete the necessary purchases to respond to A-14-106. The recommendation will be re-examined when a budget is approved.

From: NTSB
To: State of Illinois
Date: 7/20/2016
Response: We note that you have not been able to address these recommendations because, as of the date of your letter, your state’s budget had not yet been approved. However, we are encouraged to learn that, once this issue has been resolved, the ISP intends to re-examine these recommendations. In the meantime, pending our receipt of future updates and completion of the recommended action, Safety Recommendations A 14-103 and A-14-105 and -106 remain classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Illinois
To: NTSB
Date: 4/29/2016
Response: -From Leo P. Schmitz, Director, Illinois State Police: Response: The ISP AOB has recommended the ISP participate in the Airborne Law Enforcement Association (ALEA) Accreditation program. This accreditation program is "designed to objectively evaluate and certify a law enforcement air unit's overall compliance with safety and efficiency standards as developed and adopted by the ALEA." This program provides audits every three years. Update: Currently, the state of Illinois does not have a budget in place. Without a budget, the Air Operations program cannot complete the necessary purchases to respond to A-14-106. This safety recommendation will be re-examined when a budget is approved.

From: NTSB
To: State of Illinois
Date: 3/22/2016
Response: You previously informed us that the ISP was reviewing guidance on developing and implementing an SMS and was considering becoming accredited by the Airborne Law Enforcement Association. We note, however, that these plans have also been delayed until after the ISP has an approved budget. Accordingly, pending our receipt of future updates and completion of the recommended actions, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 remain classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Illinois
To: NTSB
Date: 12/23/2015
Response: -From Leo P. Schmitz, Director, Illinois State Police: Currently, the State of Illinois does not have a budget in place. Without a budget, the Air Operations program cannot complete the necessary purchases to respond to A-14-106. This safety recommendation will be re-examined when a budget is approved.

From: NTSB
To: State of Illinois
Date: 11/20/2015
Response: You previously informed us that, although the ISP has incorporated some safety management processes, it does not currently have a formal SMS program in place. We are encouraged to learn that the ISP is reviewing guidance on developing and implementing an SMS and is considering becoming accredited by the Airborne Law Enforcement Association. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the department’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 remain classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Illinois
To: NTSB
Date: 8/27/2015
Response: -From Leo P. Schmitz, Director, Illinois State Police: Response: The JSP is fully accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). The AOB provides information under the "Specialized Vehicle Training" and "Search and Rescue" provisions of the CALEA standards. This review occurs every three years, with the next evaluation scheduled in 2016. Update: The ISP AOB has recommended the ISP participate in the ALEA Accreditation program. This accreditation program is "designed to objectively evaluate and certify a law enforcement air unit's overall compliance with safety and efficiency standards as developed and adopted by the ALEA." This program provides audits every three years.

From: NTSB
To: State of Illinois
Date: 6/10/2015
Response: We note that the ISP has incorporated some safety management processes, but that it does not currently have a formal SMS program in place. We point out that the International Helicopter Safety Team has developed the Safety Management System Toolkit to aid in the development of such a program. This aid can be downloaded free of charge at http://ihst.org/Portals/54/SMS-Toolkit.pdf. Another resource is the FAA’s AC 120 92A, Safety Management Systems for Aviation Service Providers. We encourage the ISP to review this guidance and to develop a formal SMS program that is appropriate for its size. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the department’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Illinois
To: NTSB
Date: 2/26/2015
Response: -From Leo P. Schmitz, Director, Illinois State Police: The ISP is fully accredited by the Commission on Accreditation tor Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). The AOB provides information under the "Specialized Vehicle Training" and "Search and Rescue" provisions of the CALEA standards. This review occurs every three years, with the next evaluation scheduled in 2016.

From: NTSB
To: State of Indiana
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Indiana on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Indiana on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Iowa
Date: 10/26/2017
Response: We note that the state of Iowa does not conduct helicopter SAR operations; however, we believe that all air operations could benefit from the safety improvements specified in these recommendations. Accordingly, we urge the state of Iowa to make the safety improvements discussed in these recommendations to all its air operations. Because these recommendations were specifically aimed at public operators who conduct helicopter SAR operations, though, Safety Recommendations A 14-100 through -106 are classified CLOSED--RECONSIDERED.

From: State of Iowa
To: NTSB
Date: 8/10/2017
Response: -From Tim McClung, Iowa DOT, Office of Aviation: Thank you for the NTSB’s August 3, 2017 letter to Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds regarding NTSB safety recommendations A-14-100 through -106. The letter indicates the recommendations were issued as a result of the investigation into an accident involving a Eurocopter AS350 B3 owned and operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety. Iowa does not own or operate helicopters for use in public safety efforts and therefore does not engage in Night Vision Goggle operations, off airport landings, or operations in mountainous areas. Accordingly, the recommendations would not apply. This communication is intended to provide information needed to close the response status for Iowa on these recommendations. Please let me know if you need additional information.

From: NTSB
To: State of Iowa
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106. We issued these recommendations to the state of Iowa on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search and rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 2 years ago. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Kansas
Date: 5/4/2015
Response: We note that you do not currently have an SMS program and that you believe individual operators should be allowed to tailor an SMS program to their own operations. We agree; however, we believe that every SMS should include the basic elements listed in Safety Recommendation A 14-105, at a minimum. We also believe that regular, ongoing reviews are vital to ensuring the program’s effectiveness, improvement, and success. We point out that the International Helicopter Safety Team and the Airborne Law Enforcement Association have each developed SMS toolkits to help operators develop an SMS designed to fit the size, nature, and complexity of their organizations. These aids can be downloaded free of charge at http://ihst.org/Portals/54/SMS-Toolkit.pdf and http://www.alea.org/downloads/safety/SMS-Toolkit.pdf, respectively. Another resource you may find helpful is the FAA’s AC 120 92A, Safety Management Systems for Aviation Service Providers. We encourage you to review this guidance and to develop a basic, formal SMS program that is appropriate for the state of Kansas and that includes the recommended elements. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding your progress to implement an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Kansas
To: NTSB
Date: 1/30/2015
Response: -From Mark A. Bruce, Colonel, Superintendent, Kansas Highway Patrol: Recently we received a copy of the NTSB's proposed safety recommendations (attached) from your office. We have reviewed them and assessed the impact to KHP aircraft operations. We anticipate the impact to be similar in nature to other law enforcement aircraft operations within the state of Kansas. Below is our assessment and response to those specific NTSB safety recommendations. We appreciate the spirit and nature of the recent recommendations (A-14-100 through -106) provided by the NTSB in their letter dated November 24, 2014. We have not taken the recommendations lightly and have reviewed them for their well-intentioned benefits. Part of our review has included the referenced accident involving the Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter in March of 2013. Keeping the purpose of the recommendations in mind, as well as our already high commitment to safety, we must mention that a considerable obstacle to implementation of several of the proposed measures is cost. Many states and their government agencies have fiscal challenges, and the Kansas Highway Patrol is no exception. While a price cannot be put on a life, we have a responsibility to the public we serve with the very nature of the services we provide, as well as to the employees we request to carry out those services. In return for our responses, we would very much appreciate reciprocation by being provided the responses of other agencies from other states as well. Their opinions and recommendations could be quite valuable. This would also encourage an open dialogue without unintentionally suppressing potentially innovative methods to pursue best practices in a more cost effective manner. Obviously, the KHP aircraft unit constantly pursues high standards. However, the KHP does not support external audits that are conducted by private sector companies for a fee. Non-compliance or issues that they find are highly subjective and can be interpreted in many ways. KHP aircraft operations, as with most law enforcement aircraft operations, holds to a high self-imposed standard and is best positioned to daily assess and enforce compliance to established protocols. Internal agency self-audits based on SMS protocol would allow agencies to address issues in a more objective and realistic manner. This would considerably reduce costs to the taxpayer as well as increasing morale, pride and buy-in of the unit members which is critical in a law enforcement team. The KHP does not desire to add additional and unnecessary bureaucratic layers to unit operations when additional best practices and/or protocols can be incorporated and complied with internally at a greatly reduced cost to the Kansas taxpayer.

From: NTSB
To: Commonwealth of Kentucky
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106. We issued these recommendations to the commonwealth of Kentucky on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 2 years ago. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Louisiana
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Louisiana on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Louisiana on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Maine
Date: 7/5/2018
Response: On March 26, 2018, Major Christopher Grotton, MSP, informed our staff that the MSP operates two fixed wing aircraft, mostly for law enforcement missions. Major Grotton reported that the MSP does not operate any helicopters, but that the Maine Forest Service operates helicopters. On April 5, 2018, Mr. John Crowley, Maine Forest Service, informed our staff that the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is the state organization responsible for conducting SAR missions; however, because the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife does not operate any helicopters, the Maine Forest Service assists with SAR missions that require the use of helicopters. Because these recommendations were specifically aimed at public operators who conduct helicopter SAR operations, we believe that the Maine Forest Service is the appropriate state organization to respond to Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, and Mr. Crowley informed us that he is in the process of developing a response. Pending our receipt of this information, Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106 remain classified OPEN--AWAIT RESPONSE.

From: State of Maine
To: NTSB
Date: 2/12/2018
Response: -From Major Christopher Grotton, Maine State Police, Support Services Division: This letter is in response to the NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13-21 and A-14-100 through -106 issued to the State of Maine in an August 2017 letter to Governor LePage. The Maine State Police Air Wing has a small profile within the overall scope of aviation operations conducted within the State of Maine. We have two fixed wing aircraft in our inventory with no rotary wing asset. Our core mission is primarily traffic related flights which are conducted during the daylight and in VFR conditions only. Any night VFR or day/night IFR flights that are requested would typically be administrative in nature and would be conducted operating under part 91 regulations. When requested, we assist other aviation assets and agencies within the state under the conditions that the flight can be done within the confines of our Standard Operating Procedures Manual and our General Orders that pertains to the Air Wing. Any search and rescue mission that we would be involved in would be conducted during daylight VFR only conditions. Our aircraft are equipped with wheels only and are not allowed to perform "off-site" landings. We are restricted to published airports only. Those flights would also be conducted utilizing part 91 regulations. I am in hopes that this information provides some context for our air operations and the applicability of the recommendations in your August 2017 letter. Our responses (below) to each of your recommendations are crafted within the context of our mission. The Air Wing SOP and General Order are reviewed on a regular basis and changes are made when necessary. These documents are then reviewed by our staff attorney. We will explore the possibility of having an outside agency audit our SOP and General Order as it pertains to safety of flight.

From: NTSB
To: State of Maine
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Maine on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Maine on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Maryland
Date: 7/15/2015
Response: We are encouraged to learn that the MSP’s SQMS will include an independent audit on a regular basis. Pending implementation of an SQMS that includes the recommended audits, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Maryland
To: NTSB
Date: 3/25/2015
Response: From Michael W. DeRuggiero, Safety Management Officer, Aviation Command, Maryland State Police: MSPAC's SQMS is being designed to utilize daily safety inspections, monthly and/or quarterly safety audits, safety/hazard reports and incident/accident reports to analyze conditions and to make changes in equipment, MSP AC policy and processes or training to help mitigate or eliminate risks. In an effort to comply with NTSB recommendation A-14-106, MSPAC's SQMS will be amended to include an external audit of MSPAC's SQMS at least every 3 years by an outside organization. In closing, as the MSP AC continues to pursue FAA certification to conduct all air ambulance flight operations and patient transports under Title 14, CFR 135, it is the MSPAC's intention to make every attempt to fully comply with each and every NTSB recommendation issued specifically to the MSP AC, Public and/or Commercial HEMS Operators.

From: NTSB
To: Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the commonwealth of Massachusetts on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the commonwealth of Massachusetts on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Michigan
Date: 1/14/2016
Response: We note that the MSP Aviation Unit has implemented a formal SMS program, based on the Airborne Law Enforcement Association’s Safety Management System Toolkit, and that the program is reviewed annually by your local FAA Flight Standards District Office. These actions satisfy Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106, which are classified CLOSED—ACCEPTABLE ACTION.

From: State of Michigan
To: NTSB
Date: 10/28/2015
Response: -From Colonel Kriste Kibbey Etue, Director, State of Michigan, Department of State Police: This letter is in response to your correspondence dated September 16, 2015, to Governor Rick Snyder detailing the safety recommendations of your department. The two action items, A-16-105 and A-16-106, indicate that the Michigan State Police (MSP) Aviation Unit does not have a formal Safety Management System (SMS),• and tt is not reviewed externally every three years. Both recommendations are classified "Open-Acceptable Response." This is to advise that the MSP Aviation Unit does have a formal SMS in place and it is reviewed by the Federal Aviation Administration annually. The Aviation Unit's SMS was carefully developed by closely following the Airborne Law Enforcement Association (ALEA) standards. It contains the following key components listed in the SMS Toolkit provided by ALEA. • A Safety Policy letter issued, and authorized by the Director of the State Police • The Safety Section of the units operations manual includes o Purpose of the Safety Program o Safety duties of all members of the unit o Safety Officer duties o Hazard reporting o Hazard review o Accident and incident investigation o Safety training o Safety equipment o Safety procedures o Safety meetings o Pre-Accident plan The Aviation unit conducts an annual internal review of our SMS, as well as, an external program review by the Flight Standards District Office of the Federal Aviation Administration.

From: NTSB
To: State of Michigan
Date: 9/16/2015
Response: We note that, although the MSP Aviation Unit has a safety program that incorporates some safety management processes, it does not have a formal SMS program. We point out that the Airborne Law Enforcement Association has developed the Safety Management System Toolkit to help law enforcement agencies develop an SMS designed to fit the size, nature, and complexity of their organizations. This aid can be downloaded free of charge at http://www.alea.org/downloads/safety/SMS-Toolkit.pdf. We encourage the MSP to review this guidance and to develop a formal SMS program that is appropriate for the state of Michigan. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding MSP’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and 106 remain classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Michigan
To: NTSB
Date: 6/29/2015
Response: -From Colonel Kriste Kibbey Etue, Director, Michigan State Police: • As detailed in the correspondence dated January 23, 2015, the MSP Aviation Unit does have a SMS compliant safety program that is reviewed annually by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). • The Aviation Unit Operations Manual Chapter 6 details the unit safety program. Included in this SMS compliant safety program is Safety Officers duties and responsibilities, hazard reporting procedures, safety training requirements, accident investigation procedures, and a pre-accident plan. 1 have published a memorandum as the Director detailing my support and guidance for the Aviation Unit safety program. The Aviation Unit safety program along with many other aspects of the unit's operation is review annually by the Grand Rapids Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) of the FAA.

From: NTSB
To: State of Michigan
Date: 6/10/2015
Response: We note that the MSP has incorporated some safety management processes and is revising its operations manual to incorporate a formal SMS program, as recommended. We also note that, once a formal SMS program is in place, the MSP intends to have audits conducted on a regular basis by an outside organization. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the MSP’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Michigan
To: NTSB
Date: 1/23/2015
Response: -From Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, Director, Michigan State Police and Kirk T. Steudle, Director, Michigan Department of Transportation: • The MSP Aviation Unit operations manual is reviewed by the Federal Aviation Administration Flight Standards District Office in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on an annual basis. The Aviation Unit operations manual will be revised to incorporate all sections impacting flight safety listed in the MSP's response to A-14-105 into one section and formally identified as the "Safety Management System" for ease in referencing policies impacting flight safety and to comply with the intent of safety recommendation A-14-105. Once this revision is completed, MSP will request a complete audit of the operations manual by the ALEA. • An initial independent GAP analysis has been completed and SMS development is moving forward at the MOOT Aero. Regular audits at three years or less intervals will be conducted.

From: NTSB
To: State of Minnesota
Date: 5/4/2015
Response: We note that the MSP does not currently have an SMS program but is researching such programs with the intention of implementing one. We point out that the International Helicopter Safety Team and the Airborne Law Enforcement Association have each developed SMS toolkits to help operators develop an SMS designed to fit the size, nature, and complexity of their organizations. These aids can be downloaded free of charge at http://ihst.org/Portals/54/SMS-Toolkit.pdf and http://www.alea.org/downloads/safety/SMS-Toolkit.pdf, respectively. Another resource that the MSP may find helpful is the FAA’s AC 120 92A, Safety Management Systems for Aviation Service Providers. We encourage the MSP to review this guidance and to develop a basic, formal, and appropriate SMS program that includes the recommended elements. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding MSP progress to implement an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and 106 are classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Minnesota
To: NTSB
Date: 1/30/2015
Response: -From Colonel Matthew C. Langer, Chief, Minnesota State Patrol: Once a formalized safety management system as described in A-14-105 is in place, audits will be conducted every three years.

From: NTSB
To: State of Mississippi
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Mississippi on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Mississippi on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Missouri
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Missouri on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Missouri on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Montana
Date: 10/26/2017
Response: We note that the Montana Highway Patrol (MHP) operates two aircraft for law enforcement missions; however, as Mr. John Spencer, MHP, informed our staff on October 4, 2017, SAR operations are not the MHP’s primary mission, but fall under the purview of the county sheriff’s offices. We believe that all air operations could benefit from the safety improvements specified in these recommendations, and we urge the state of Montana to make the recommended safety improvements to all its air operations. However, because these recommendations were specifically aimed at public operators who conduct helicopter SAR operations, Safety Recommendations A 14-100 through -106 are classified CLOSED--RECONSIDERED.

From: State of Montana
To: NTSB
Date: 8/18/2017
Response: -From Mike Tooley, Director, Montana Department of Transportation: The State of Montana appreciates the leadership your agency has provided to enhance and promote the safety of law enforcement public aircraft operations across the nation. The Montana Highway Patrol (MHP) operates a 1971 Bell OH-58A helicopter and a 1978 Cessna 182-RG airplane in its law enforcement mission, with a single officer responsible for all flying duties. Total flight hours are less than 100 hours per year. The MHP flight department has considered the NTSB Safety Recommendations and has implemented them in the following manner: No provisions are in place for an outside audit of the safety management system.

From: NTSB
To: State of Montana
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106. We issued these recommendations to the state of Montana on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue (SAR) flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 2 years ago. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Nebraska
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 2 years ago. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE.

From: NTSB
To: State of Nevada
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Nevada on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Nevada on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of New Hampshire
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of New Hampshire on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of New Hampshire on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of New Jersey
Date: 6/24/2015
Response: We note that the NJSP regularly reviews and evaluates its SMS; however, to ensure the program’s effectiveness, improvement, and success, we believe that the NJSP should arrange for an independent audit on a regular basis. Therefore, we encourage the NJSP to take the recommended action. Pending implementation of a regular, independent audit of the SMS, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of New Jersey
To: NTSB
Date: 2/26/2015
Response: -From Joseph R. Fuentes, Colonel, Superintendent: The New Jersey State Police Aviation Bureau incorporates the SMS as part of our operations. Understanding the importance, we continually review and evaluate our SMS. We utilize best practices when identifying the need to implement changes. Any identified changes are shared with our pilots and training is updated to meet these modifications.

From: NTSB
To: State of New Mexico
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of New Mexico on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of New Mexico on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of New York
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of New York on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of New York on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of “Open—Await Response.” For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of North Carolina
Date: 6/10/2015
Response: We note that SHP is in the process of arranging for regular audits of its SMS. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding SHP’s progress, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of North Carolina
To: NTSB
Date: 2/5/2015
Response: -From William Grey, Colonel, Commanding, North Carolina Department of Public Safety, State Highway Patrol: 1. We currently have no process in place to have an audit of our Safety Management System every three years by an outside organization but are working towards implementing for outside audits. 2. The designated Safety Officer for Aircraft Operations has been assigned to update the SMS with best known industry standards. Our Safety Officer recently attended an Airborne Law Enforcement Association regional safety conference. He solicited feedback from other law enforcement aviation agencies to determine how those agencies will be complying with this recommendation.

From: NTSB
To: State of North Dakota
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106. We issued these recommendations to the state of North Dakota on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 2 years ago. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Ohio
Date: 3/17/2015
Response: We note that, once your SMS is fully developed and operational, you will arrange for an outside organization to conduct audits of your SMS every 3 years, as recommended. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding your progress, Safety Recommendation A-14-106 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Ohio
To: NTSB
Date: 12/18/2014
Response: -From Cari R. Maines, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Office of the Superintendent: The Ohio State Highway Patrol’s Aviation Section was started in 1947 with the approval of Senate Bill 221. The following year we made the purchase of one fixed wing bonanza. The original mission intent was for disaster relief, air searches, transportation, aerial photography, and errands of mercy. We had one aircraft and one pilot. Today, 67 years later, we have 16 pilots, 1 office assistant, and 16 aircraft. Annually, we log around 7,000 flight hours. Our fleet includes: • 2 Cessna 172R Skyhawk fixed wing airplanes • 2 Cessna 182S Skylane fixed wing airplanes • 9 Cessna 182T Skylane fixed wing airplanes • 1 Cessna 208B Caravan fixed wing airplane • 2 American Eurocopter AS350B2 helicopters Our primary mission is aerial traffic enforcement, and it comprises approximately 85% of our flight time. The remaining flight time is spent conducting other missions, including: • Searches (stranded motorists, downed aircraft, lost children, elderly walkaways, drowning victims, manhunts, etc.) • Surveillance (criminal interdiction, reconnaissance) • Photo flights (crashes, evidentiary, reconnaissance) • Drug interdiction flights including marijuana eradication • Emergency transportation (personnel, blood relays) • Special response team operations • Training Since our inception, we have suffered three crashes. Two of those were fatal fixed wing crashes (1970 & 1976) and the other was a minor injury helicopter crash in 1993. Since 1976, we have accumulated over 250,000 hours of accident free fixed wing flight. Our operations are a bit unique compared to most state agencies. We only use personnel assigned to the Aviation Section as part of our flight crew. Every Trooper / Pilot has spent time in the field as a State Trooper. State Troopers applying for a Trooper/Pilot position must possess a Private Pilot’s License (Airplane – Single Engine Land) with an Instrument Rating prior to appointment. After spending some time in the Section, some of our pilots are then trained as Tactical Flight Officers. Our helicopter pilots are also chosen from among the Section’s fixed wing pilots. We make a concerted effort to make safety our highest priority. We believe that “If it’s predictable, it’s preventable.” We are proud to say that every recommendation issued was either current practice or being developed. The following paragraphs summarize the actions we have planned and/or taken during implementation of the NTSB recommendations. We will arrange for an independent audit every three years once our system is fully developed and operational.

From: NTSB
To: State of Oklahoma
Date: 12/15/2017
Response: We note that, although the OHP has incorporated some safety management processes and is considering becoming accredited by the Airborne Law Enforcement Association, it does not currently have a formal SMS program. We point out that the International Helicopter Safety Team has developed the Safety Management System Toolkit to aid in the development of such a program. This aid can be downloaded free of charge at http://ihst.org/Portals/54/SMS Toolkit.pdf. Another resource you may find helpful is the FAA’s Advisory Circular 120 92A, “Safety Management Systems for Aviation Service Providers.” We encourage you to review this guidance and to develop a formal SMS program that is appropriate for the OHP. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the OHP’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Oklahoma
To: NTSB
Date: 8/16/2017
Response: -From Michael C. Thompson, Commissioner, Oklahoma Department of Public Safety: This recommendation has not been met due to agency funding restrictions and limitations. Efforts by the department to maintain safety are currently ensured through internal review by command personnel and the training of personnel in the Air Support Standard Operating Procedures.

From: NTSB
To: State of Oklahoma
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106. We issued these recommendations to the state of Oklahoma on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 2 years ago. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of “Open—Await Response.” For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Oregon
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Oregon on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Oregon on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of “Open—Await Response.” For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
Date: 1/19/2018
Response: We note that, although the PSP has incorporated some safety management processes, it does not currently have a formal SMS program. The International Helicopter Safety Team has developed the Safety Management System Toolkit to aid in the development of such a program, and the aid can be downloaded, free of charge, at http://ihst.org/Portals/54/SMS-Toolkit.pdf. The FAA’s Advisory Circular 120 92A, “Safety Management Systems for Aviation Service Providers,” is another useful resource. We encourage the PSP to review this guidance and to develop a formal SMS program that is appropriate for its size and operations. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the PSP’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
To: NTSB
Date: 11/2/2017
Response: -Leslie S. Richards, Secretary Department of Transportation, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania: Per our Department regulations, the PSP Aviation Section is inspected annually via Department Line inspection and every 3 years by the Bureau of Integrity and Professional Standards, Systems and Process Review Division. PSP is also continually inspected by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc., (CALEA®). These inspections allow PSP to main accreditation under CALEA standards.

From: NTSB
To: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the commonwealth of Pennsylvania on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the commonwealth of Pennsylvania on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: Commonwealth of Puerto Rico
Date: 6/10/2015
Response: We note that the PRPD has incorporated some safety management processes, but that it does not currently have a formal SMS program in place. We point out that the International Helicopter Safety Team has developed the Safety Management System Toolkit to aid in the development of such a program. This aid can be downloaded free of charge at http://ihst.org/Portals/54/SMS-Toolkit.pdf. Another resource is the FAA’s AC 120 92A, Safety Management Systems for Aviation Service Providers. We encourage the PRPD to review this guidance and to develop a formal SMS program that is appropriate for its size. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the department’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: Commonwealth of Puerto Rico
To: NTSB
Date: 2/23/2015
Response: -From Jose L. Caldero Lopez, P.R.P.D. Superintendent, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico: The Puerto Rico Police Department is determined to create an Evaluation Committee, which will be responsible for analyzing the missions realized in all operational aspects and that of the Federal Aviation Administration. These are comprised of; a- Personnel of the Puerto Rico Aerial National Guard b- Puerto Rico Natural Resources Department c- The Puerto Rico Police Department

From: NTSB
To: State of South Dakota
Date: 2/22/2018
Response: On January 16, 2018, Mr. Ron Hauck, Aviation Service, South Dakota Department of Transportation, infomed our staff that the South Dakota Highway Patrol operates fixed wing aircraft for law enforcement missions; however, the state does not operate any helicopters. We believe that all air operations could benefit from the safety improvements specified in these recommendations, and we urge the state of South Dakota to make the recommended safety improvements to its air operations. However, because these recommendations were specifically aimed at public operators who conduct helicopter SAR operations, Safety Recommendations A 14-100 through -106 are classified CLOSED--RECONSIDERED.

From: State of South Dakota
To: NTSB
Date: 11/21/2017
Response: -From Dennis Daugaard, Governor of South Dakota: As to recommendations A-13-21 and A-14-100 through -106, the South Dakota Highway Patrol has reviewed the recommendations, as well as the NTSB accident report, NTSB/AAR-14/03 PB2014-108877, including the findings, probable cause, and recommendations contained in that report. All flight operations conducted by the state of South Dakota are conducted under FAR Part 91 Rules and all FAR 91 Rules are currently being complied with. South Dakota will continue to conduct all flight operations in accordance with all federal aviation regulations.

From: NTSB
To: State of South Dakota
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of South Dakota on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of South Dakota on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of “Open—Await Response.” For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of South Carolina
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of South Carolina on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of South Carolina on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Tennessee
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Tennessee on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Tennessee on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Texas
Date: 5/18/2016
Response: We are encouraged to learn that DPS is in the process of applying for ALEA accreditation, which includes an on-site visit and review of the department’s policies, procedures, and operations (including those related to SMS). Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the department’s progress in obtaining this accreditation, Safety Recommendation A 14 106 remains classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Texas
To: NTSB
Date: 3/15/2016
Response: -From Steven C. McCraw, Director, Texas Department of Public Safety: AOD currently meets the following SMS Toolkit requirements as suggested by ALEA-C to include; a safety committee that meets quarterly (est. 2008), a crew rest policy (est. 1993), Emergency Response Plan (est. 2008), issuance and requirement of crewmembers to wear protective equipment (est. 1995), suggested safety documents, safety library, and the recently implemented Flight Risk Assessment Tool. In January, 2016, AOD added to the SMS a Hazard Tracking Form to log risk items identified through gap analysis, safety surveys, Hazard Identification: Reports, or from other avenues reported to the safety team and administrators. This month, AOD has paid the initial application fee and formally applied for ALEA-C Accreditation as the Texas DPS Office of General Counsel works to formalize the contractual agreement. We are looking forward to this worthwhile endeavor.

From: State of Texas
To: NTSB
Date: 9/4/2015
Response: -From Greg Abbott, Governor: Thank you for your letter addressed to former Governor Rick Perry regarding NTSB Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through 106. I am sharing your letter with the Texas Department of Transportation's Aviation Division, which will coordinate with my office in discussing the flight safety issues you addressed. Please let me know if I can assist you in the future.

From: NTSB
To: State of Texas
Date: 9/3/2015
Response: We are pleased to learn that the DPS is currently undergoing accreditation by the Airborne Law Enforcement Association (ALEA). We note, however, that, although the DPS has a safety program that incorporates some safety management processes, the department does not have a formal SMS program in place. We point out that the ALEA has developed its SMS Toolkit to help law enforcement agencies develop an SMS designed to fit the size, nature, and complexity of their organizations. This aid can be downloaded free of charge at http://www.alea.org/downloads/safety/SMS-Toolkit.pdf. We encourage the DPS to review this guidance and to develop a formal SMS program that is appropriate for the state of Texas. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding the department’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A 14 105 and 106 remain classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Texas
To: NTSB
Date: 6/19/2015
Response: -From Steven C. McCraw, Director: Aircraft Operations has initiated the requisition process to secure funding for the accreditation through the Airborne Law Enforcement Association. Aircraft Operations is currently performing the "Self-Assessment" portion of the accreditation process required by ALEA while awaiting approval for the $9,500 requisition. The accreditation project is planned to be completed by Spring of2016 and as recommended by the NTSB, we plan to renew every 3 years.

From: NTSB
To: State of Texas
Date: 4/27/2015
Response: We note that, although you have incorporated some safety management processes and are considering becoming accredited by the Airborne Law Enforcement Association (ALEA), you do not currently have a formal SMS program. We point out that the International Helicopter Safety Team and ALEA have each developed SMS toolkits to help operators develop an SMS designed to fit the size, nature, and complexity of their organizations. These aids can be downloaded free of charge at http://ihst.org/Portals/54/SMS-Toolkit.pdf and http://www.alea.org/downloads/safety/SMS-Toolkit.pdf, respectively. Another resource you may find helpful is the FAA’s AC 120 92A, Safety Management Systems for Aviation Service Providers. We encourage you to review this guidance and to develop a formal SMS program that is appropriate for the state of Texas. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding your progress to implement an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Texas
To: NTSB
Date: 1/5/2015
Response: -From Steven C. McCraw, Director, Texas Department of Public Safety: The Airborne Law Enforcement Association has had an accreditation board for several years. Assistant Chief Pilot Tim Ochsner was recently appointed to the ALEA Accreditation Board. AOD is strongly considering making an application to ALEA to start the accreditation process.

From: NTSB
To: State of Utah
Date: 12/28/2017
Response: We are encouraged to learn that the Aero Bureau is currently developing an SMS program, and that it intends to have an outside organization audit the program periodically. Pending our receipt of updates regarding the Aero Bureau’s progress in implementing the system, and information about the organization that will be auditing it, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: NTSB
To: State of Utah
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 2 years ago. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE.

From: NTSB
To: Commonwealth of Virginia
Date: 8/3/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the commonwealth of Virginia on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the commonwealth of Virginia on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Washington
Date: 9/16/2015
Response: We note that the WSP’s Aviation Section does not conduct SAR operations; however, we believe that all air operations could benefit from the safety improvements specified in these recommendations. Because these recommendations were specifically aimed at public operators who conduct SAR operations, however, Safety Recommendations A 14-100, -101 and -103 through -106 are classified CLOSED—RECONSIDERED.

From: State of Washington
To: NTSB
Date: 7/29/2015
Response: -From Lieutenant D. Jim Nobach: Reference our phone conversation on Monday, July 27, 2015 concerning follow-up information regarding the A-14-100 questions, the Washington State Patrol (WSP) Aviation Section does not actively engage in Search and Rescue operations. Therefore, the follow-up information previously requested is no longer required of the WSP. At this time we will consider all A-14-100-106 related requests of WSP satisfied. If you have any additional questions, please contact the Washington State Patrol Aviation Section.

From: NTSB
To: State of Washington
Date: 5/4/2015
Response: We note that WSP has incorporated some safety management processes and that its efforts to implement a formal SMS program are ongoing. We also note that, once a formal SMS program is in place, WSP intends to have audits conducted regularly by an outside organization. Pending our receipt of future updates regarding WSP’s progress in implementing an SMS and, once implemented, the regular auditing of the program, Safety Recommendations A-14-105 and -106 are classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: State of Washington
To: NTSB
Date: 2/20/2015
Response: -From Lieutenant Jim Nobach, Washington State Patrol (WSP) Aviation Chief Pilot: The WSP has essential components of a Safety Management System (SMS) and is incorporating the “four pillars of safety management” developed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). The WSP began the process of incorporating SMS into its aviation program in 2011. During the last three years we have continued to train personnel on SMS process and implement procedure changes that incorporate the systems approach. Our next goal is to achieve International Standards for Business Aircraft Operations (IS-BAO) certification by the end of 2018. We are working with a recognized industry professional organization that offers a comprehensive package of SMS services and tools that will lead us through the necessary changes to achieve this goal and further the effectiveness of our SMS. Additionally, as part of the Northwest Regional Aviation Association, the WSP will have a Regional Aerial Law Enforcement Association partner conduct a SMS audit every three years. The partner follows ALEA guidelines and best practices. Additionally, internal audits are conducted annually by the WSP Chief Pilot and Air Operations/Safety Officer. WSP conducts operations under the Washington State LEAN initiative. The LEAN initiative promotes formulating partnerships with outside organizations. For instance, rather than the State of Washington paying to have an outside vendor conduct an outside audit, have a partnership with various organizations with similar equipment and size conduct the audit. This will reduce cost and provide an opportunity for various aerial law enforcement units to find best practices.

From: NTSB
To: State of West Virginia
Date: 8/1/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of West Virginia on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of West Virginia on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.

From: NTSB
To: State of Wisconsin
Date: 8/2/2017
Response: This letter addresses NTSB Safety Recommendations A-13 21 and A-14-100 through -106. We issued A-13-21 to the state of Wisconsin on May 15, 2013, as a result of our investigations of three accidents in which airplanes inadvertently collided with meteorological evaluation towers, fatally injuring four people. We issued A-14-100 through -106 to the state of Wisconsin on November 24, 2014, as a result of our investigation of the March 30, 2013, accident in which a Eurocopter AS350 B3 helicopter, operated by the Alaska Department of Public Safety, impacted terrain while maneuvering during a search-and-rescue flight near Talkeetna, Alaska. We are interested in knowing whether and how our recommendations are implemented, both to ensure that the traveling public is provided the highest level of safety and to identify creative solutions that might be shared with others, and we normally expect actions to address our recommendations to be completed within 3 to 5 years. We have yet to hear from you regarding your progress toward addressing these recommendations, which were issued more than 4 and 2 years ago, respectively. We would appreciate receiving a response within 90 days indicating any actions you have taken or plan to take to implement these recommendations; until then, these recommendations will retain their current classification of OPEN—AWAIT RESPONSE. For additional background information about Safety Recommendation A-13-21, please refer to our May 15, 2013, recommendation transmittal letter. For additional background information about Safety Recommendations A-14-100 through -106, please refer to pages 54 through 63 of our Alaska Department of Public Safety Eurocopter accident report.