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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-89-130
Details
Synopsis: ABOUT 0901 CENTRAL DAYLIGHT TIME ON AUGUST 31, 1988, DELTA AIR LINES, INC., FLIGHT 1141, CRASHED SHORTLY AFTER LIFTING OFF FROM RUNWAY 18L AT THE DALLAS-FORTH WORTH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (DFW), TEXAS. THE AIRPLANE, A BOEING 727-232, U.S. REGISTRY N473DA, WAS A REGULARLY SCHEDULED PASSENGER FLIGHT AND WAS EN ROUTE TO SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH.
Recommendation: TO THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION: Initiate a joint airline industry force to develop a directed approach to the structure, functions, and responsibilities of airline flight safety programs with the view toward advisory and regulatory provisions for such programs at all Part 121 airlines. (superseded by A-94-201)
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Unacceptable Action/Superseded
Mode: Aviation
Location: DALLAS/FT WORTH, TX, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA88MA072
Accident Reports: Delta Air Lines, Inc., Boeing 727-232, N473DA
Report #: AAR-89-04
Accident Date: 8/31/1988
Issue Date: 1/9/1990
Date Closed: 11/30/1994
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Unacceptable Action/Superseded)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 11/30/1994
Response: In response to the recommendation, the FAA Administrator cited the release of an advisory circular (AC 120-56) that provided guidelines for the establishment and use of voluntary disclosure programs at airlines conducting operations under Parts 121 or 135: On March 27, 1990, I announced a national policy intended to encourage more self-policing by airlines and to give new information about what is happening in the industry. An operator who discovers inadvertent non-compliance must promptly correct it and disclose it to the FAA, as well as take necessary corrective actions satisfactory to the FAA that precludes recurrence of similar non-compliance. The Safety Board replied to the FAA that the voluntary disclosure programs described in AC 120-56 are concerned with the self-disclosure of instances of regulatory noncompliance, whereas the recommendation sought action to develop safety programs that address nonregulatory safety concerns. Because FAA’s action did not directly address the recommendation, the Board classified Safety Recommendation A-89-130 Open-Unacceptable Response. On October 26, 1992, the FAA issued AC 120-59, Air Carrier Internal Evaluation Programs, which outlined voluntary means for airlines operating under Parts 121or 135 to monitor the safety and regulatory compliance of their operations on a continual basis through a process of internal audits and inspections. Participants at the 1994 public forum commented that the FAA-sponsored internal evaluation programs are intended to go beyond the self-disclosure programs described in AC 120-56 in that they address both regulatory noncompliance and nonregulatory concerns (such as company policies and practices). In developing their program, air carriers are encouraged to establish an independent evaluation process that reports directly to senior management, to conduct internal surveillance on a regularly scheduled basis, and to share the findings of the internal evaluation with the FAA principal inspectors. The Safety Board supports the intent of self-disclosure and internal evaluation programs but is concerned that both programs rely on the voluntary participation of airlines, especially considering the results of the air carrier survey, which suggest that commuter carriers generally have not developed safety programs voluntarily that meet the intent of AC 120-59. Further, although the guidelines contained in AC 120-59 recommend that internal evaluation programs include an independent function with direct access to top management, no such function is required. A mandatory airline safety program would greatly enhance a commuter air carrier’s ability to identify and correct safety problems before they lead to an accident. An independent safety function with direct access to upper level management would provide a formal means for communicating safety concerns and for coordinating actions to address those concerns. The Safety Board believes that AC 120-59, Air Carrier Internal Evaluation Programs, provides a comprehensive framework that includes the necessary elements for an effective safety function. Consequently, the Safety Board believes that the FAA should revise the Federal Aviation Regulations to require that all air carriers operating under Parts 121 and 135 establish a safety function, such as outlined in AC 120-59. The Board also reclassifies Safety Recommendation A-89-130 Closed-Unacceptable Action/ Superseded by this new recommendation. (A-94-201)

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 10/22/1993
Response: The Safety Board finds that the FAA has not addressed the intent of Safety Recommendation A-89-130, which was to initiate a joint airline industry force to develop the criteria for airline flight safety programs. The FAA's response addresses self-policing by the airlines of regulatory issues. Our intent was for the FAA to work with the airlines to develop programs that would address, in part, the "non-regulatory" safety issues that were addressed in the Delta flight 1141 accident report. We request the FAA to re-evaluate its response to this recommendation in the context of the accident report. Pending your further response, Safety Recommendation A-89-130 is classified as "Open--Unacceptable Response."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 4/12/1990
Response: "ON MARCH 27, 1990, I ANNOUNCED A NATIONAL POLICY INTENDED TO ENCOURAGE MORE SELF-POLICING BY AIRLINES AND TO GIVE THE NEW INFORMATION ABOUT WHAT IS HAPPENING IN THE INDUSTRY--AN OPERATOR WHO DISCOVERS INADVERTENT NON COMPLIANCE MUST PROMPTLY CORRECT IT AND DISCLOSE IT TO THE FAA, AS WELL AS WELL AS TAKE NECESSARY CORRECTIVE ACTIONS SATISFACTORY TO TO THE FAA THAT PRECLUDES RECURRENCE OF SIMILAR NON COMPLIANCE.-- THE FAA WILL ALSO CONDUCT ORIENTATION TRAINING SEMINARS THIS SUMMER FOR ALL COMPLIANCE INSPECTORS AND REGIONAL COUNSELS OF THIS NEW POLICY. I BELIEVE THAT THE FAA'S ACTIONS GO BEYOND THE INTENT OF THIS SAFETY RECOMMENDATION, AND I URGE THE SAFETY BOARD TO CLASSIFY THIS RECOMMENDATION AS "CLOSED."