Air Traffic Management partners in Europe sign declaration with European Commission to further improve Aviation safety

1 Oct 2015

Associations  representing all aspects of the air traffic management industry in Europe have signed a Declaration with the European Commission to improve the reporting and analysis of safety information. The Declaration sets out a number of key principles to encourage staff working in aviation to report mistakes or events without fear of punishment.

Safety incident reports submitted by staff are a valuable source of information for learning safety lessons, but to ensure organisations receive as many reports as possible, organisations must foster a ‘just culture’ in which staff know they will be treated fairly when they do report, including in circumstances where staff may feel concern that their report could potentially incriminate themselves because of their actions.

The purpose of the Declaration is to encourage a just culture whereby staff can report incidents without fear of retribution. It constitutes a set of key principles to encourage the implementation of a just culture in companies and organisations across the aviation industry. The Declaration supports European legislation, in particular the 2014 Regulation (EU) 376 ‘on the reporting, analysis and follow-up of occurrences in civil aviation.’

Just culture has been an important focus area of the ATM industry for many years. It is the air traffic controllers, pilots, engineers and safety managers – the front line – who ensure that air travel remains the safest form of transport.  It is crucial to support them and give them the tools to constantly improve safety standards. One way of constantly improving safety is to analyse mistakes, learn lessons from them and adjust procedures and processes accordingly. This Declaration demonstrates the continuing commitment of the ATM industry to safety and a safety culture.

To maintain the ATM perspective in a regulation that covers all areas of industry, ATM partners worked together to bring consolidated positions to the table during the drafting of the Declaration. They will now work together with the European Commission to further develop the key principles to implement a just culture and additional guidance and best practice materials.

The ATM partners are convinced that signing the Declaration is one further step in embracing the principles of just culture. The initiative taken by the Commission to implement just culture is not only to comply with the regulation, but is also a great opportunity to instill just culture in organisations so that it becomes part of their DNA.

The following organisations signed the Declaration: ATCEUC (Air Traffic Controllers European Unions Coordination); CANSO (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation); ETF (European Transport Workers’ Federation); IFAIMA (International Federation of Aeronautical Information Management Associations); IFATCA (International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers Associations); IFATSEA (International Federation of Air Traffic Safety Electronics Associations).

The European Corporate Just Culture Declaration can be downloaded here.

Notes for Editors:

For further information about the organisations please contact: 

Volker Dick:+49 1749843293;
President – ATCEUC (Air Traffic Controllers European Unions Coordination)

Quentin Browell:+31 (0)23 568 5382;
Head of Communications – CANSO (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation)

François Ballestero:+32 474 916 979;
Civil Aviation Political Secretary – ETF (European Transport Workers Federation)

Jorge Dias:+35 1919 080 693;
Executive Secretary – IFAIMA (International Federation of Aeronautical Information Management Associations)

Patrik Peters:+1 514 866 7040;
President and Chief Executive Officer – IFATCA (International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers Associations)

Costas Christoforou:+49 152 33 75 15 28;
Director Europe – IFATSEA (International Federation of Air Traffic Safety Electronics Associations)