Building an EASA Compliant Operations Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance Risk Register as Part of our Safety Management System (SMS)

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Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) Considers the importance of managing the risks in a systematic and controlled way, using a Risk Register as the Fundamental Tool.

Hazard identification is the foundation of the risk management process in an SMS and may be conducted reactively, proactively, and even predictably. A Hazard is something with the potential to cause harm, and a risk is the potential outcome of a hazard.

What is the difference between a Safety System Hazard Register and a Risk Register?

A hazard register is a source of information from which we can consider the risks, whereas a risk register contains information related to the nature of the risk (clearly a risk register serves a higher purpose).

The Visibility of Hazards

» Visible hazards – Are essentially obvious they can be observed, smelt, heard, tasted, or felt.
» Hidden hazards (Sometimes known as latent hazards) are not so easily understood and can relate to either physical hazards such as electricity or non-physical related to poor training, stress, etc.

An Effective Risk Register Process can support the following SMS Analysis:

» ‘Reactive’ risk management (incident investigation)
» ‘Proactive’ risk management (Used to identify potential risks)
» ‘Predictive’ risk management (supported by Data to identify the area of exposure)

As part of the development of an EASA compliant SMS related to Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance, the Safety Management System will benefit from the development and continuous monitoring of a Risk Register.

A risk register is a crucial part of your approach to managing these risks. It's a tool to help you identify, assess, and record your risks and the actions you're taking to eliminate or minimize them.

For each of the following items perform a risk assessment and ask the questions which help you determine the level of exposure that currently exists in your organisation by asking for each item the following 5 questions:

» Is this an issue in our organisation?
» If it is not considered an issue, how can I demonstrate it – Where is the evidence?
» How can I measure the effectiveness of the current process?
» How effective is documentation/training?
» If there are changes in this element how effective would the system accommodate the changes?

Examples of Potential Aircraft Engineering and Maintenance hazards which can be risk assessed for your organization:

» Limited or lack of management commitment
» Management does not demonstrate support for the activity
» Lack of or incomplete description of roles, accountabilities, and responsibilities
» Limited or lack of resource availability or planning, including staffing in the following areas
» Maintenance Planning Interface
» Production Planning Interface
» Reliability Interface
» Technical Engineering
» Technical Records Management
» Technical Records Correct Data
» Quality Assurance Training
» Quality Assurance Oversight
» Safety Management System Training
» Safety Management System Oversight
» Lack of or ineffective policies
» Incorrect or incomplete procedures including instructions
» Lack of or Poor Management, Culture, and or Manpower relationships
» Lack of or Ineffective Organizational Structure
» Poor organizational safety culture
» Lack of or ineffective safety management processes (including risk management, safety assurance, auditing, training, and resource allocation)
» Lack or ineffective audit procedures
» Maintenance Vehicle
» Maintenance stairs
» Maintenance dock and Equipment
» Aircraft jacks

Next Steps

Sofema Aviation Services and Sofema Online provide multiple training courses related to Safety Management System Risk and Hazard Training Courses. For additional information please see our websites or email

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