The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and the European Commission have agreed to standardise their categorisation of accidents and incidents in order to improve analysis of safety data.

The two authorities said the agreement, which includes use of a single repository, aims to make "concrete steps" towards creating the first global system for aviation accident reporting.

Under the pact, ICAO will promote the European Co-ordination Centre for Accident and Incident Reporting Systems for collecting and analysing data, as well as the sharing of information. The European Commission, for its part, will promote the use of ICAO taxonomy as the reporting standard.ICAO said its categorisation of accidents is "fully compatible" with the European initiative.

"Availability of standardised data at the global level will help to better understand the causes of aviation accidents, to better detect potentially serious safety hazards and to identify emerging safety issues before they become accidents," said European mobility and transport director general Matthias Ruete.

ICAO's agreement with the Commission will give "new impetus" for additional countries to join the European Co-ordination Centre - the focus of occurrence reporting in the EU under a directive effective since 2005.

Source: Flight International