Nearly 52% of more than 400 repair stations participating in a survey say they have not started any activities to develop a risk-based safety management system (SMS) in their organisation, research from Saint Louis University's Centre for Aviation Safety Research (CASR) shows.
The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is working on finalising rulemaking that would require part 121 certificate holders to establish an SMS, which uses data to prevent future safety incidents. The administration is considering a plan to extend the SMS requirements to part 145 repair stations and part 135 airlines later on. CASR has gathered the research to help the FAA better understand MRO attitudes towards SMS, and the data shows that many MROs are far from implementing a final system.
Thirty-six percent of the repair stations surveyed said that they are in the process of instating an SMS system, while only 12.5% already have a working programme in place.
If adopting SMS remains voluntary for MROs, nearly 35% of the repair stations say that they will likely not implement it. Nearly 55% of the repair stations that work on airline aircraft say they are likely to voluntarily implement the safety method, and 29% said they probably would not.
The survey shows that larger MRO organisations are more familiar with SMS regulations and have done more to implement the system. About 31% of the repair stations said they have had SMS training,
How much SMS would improve safety at repair stations is a point of disagreement among the MRO respondents. Twenty-three percent of the respondents said they strongly disagree or disagree that SMS would improve safety at their MRO, while 48% say they agree or strongly agree. Twenty-eight percent did not have an opinion either way.