The National Academies

ACRP 03-45 [Active]

Collecting and Sharing of Operational and Safety Data

  Project Data
Funds: $400,000
Staff Responsibility: Marci A. Greenberger
Research Agency: Booz Allen Hamilton
Principal Investigator: Patricia Swenor
Effective Date: 5/17/2017
Completion Date: 8/16/2018

Data are essential in risk-based decision making. As airports develop their risk management processes, the collection and sharing of information will allow airports to benchmark against the industry, and to monitor and understand trends. There remain real concerns about collecting data due to state sunshine laws and then having the data used out of context. Nonetheless, analysis of data is a necessary component in identifying and mitigating risks and hazards. Operational, facility, and other characteristics are additional data points helpful in analysis, while aggregation and sharing can be beneficial to an airport’s stakeholders and the industry. Having this data allows airports to benchmark against similar airports in the context of a specific incident, near-miss, accident, or other event that has occurred, and to understand trends. An airport may find it helpful to compare itself to similarly situated airports. For example, an airport experiencing runway incursions during snow removal operations may want to compare itself to an airport with a similar airfield configuration and weather conditions. Additionally, sharing of operational data allows for all stakeholders to have common situational awareness, such as in a collaborative decision-making environment. For any data to be useful, however, the appropriate data has to be collected and the data fields must be standardized to allow comparisons and benchmarking.
The objectives of this research are to develop a guidebook that (a) identifies safety and operational data that airports can share with stakeholders to develop or enhance their systemic approach to risk-based decision making and (b) develops a methodology for collecting and sharing that data.
The guidance should include at a minimum:
•     Categories of risks, incidents, near-misses, accidents, and other event data commonly tracked by airports;
•     Airport operational, facility, and other characteristics that can be used for benchmarking, contextual analysis, and common situational awareness;
•     Identification of data fields that should be tracked;
•     Benchmarks or metrics related to safety and operational data;
•     Identification of stakeholders;
•     Identification of challenges and concerns related to collecting data and identification of mitigation strategies to address those challenges;
•     Identification of challenges and concerns related to sharing data and identification of mitigation strategies to address those challenges;
•     Uses of safety and operational data (e.g., benchmarking, trend analysis, and hazard identification and situational awareness);
•          External sources of operational and safety data;
•          Methods of storing data; and
•     A methodology and best practices for collecting, and sharing of operational and safety information.

STATUS: Research is underway.

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