LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (November 3, 2009) -- In a first for a dedicated Helicopter Emergency Medical Service provider (HEMS), Arkansas Children’s Hospital (ACH) received FAA approval for their HFDM/FOQA program. The ACH HFDM program will serve ACH’s fleet of two S76 C+ Single Pilot Instrument (SPIFR) equipped helicopters and will provide increased visibility into the ACH flight operations. HFDM provides significant safety benefits to ACH using previously unavailable data to improve the problem identification and definition process and provide for assessment and resolution of systemic safety issues.
“The entire ACH aviation team, also known as Angel One Transport, including flight safety, flight training, flight operations, maintenance and crewmembers will benefit from this important safety program,” said ACH Director of Aviation, Bernard “BJ” Raysor. “Crucial to the success of the program are specific incentives that ensure both ACH and its pilots are protected from FAA certificate action or civil penalties as a result of information and data that are collected and analyzed by the HFDM program. In establishing these incentives ACH and the pilot group have agreed to use this confidential data to conduct trend analysis of flight operations,” Raysor said.
ACH hired system integrator and system safety consultant, CAPACG, LLC to oversee the implementation and operation of the HFDM/FOQA program. CAPACG Vice President of FDM services, Stuart “Kipp” Lau points out key areas that distinguish ACH from other FAA-approved programs, both fixed-wing and helicopter. ACH is the first dedicated HEMS operator to gain FAA-approval of a FOQA/FDM program. ACH is the first small operator to gain FAA-approval with only two aircraft, 10 pilots and no labor organization. In the past these where considered barriers to implementing a formal FOQA program. Many of these barriers were overcome by using a third-party contractor to accomplish the initial implementation, event definition and programming, analysis and initial reporting. Among the other first, ACH is the first HEMS operator to utilize a light recorder system for Helicopter Flight Data Monitoring.
“CAPACG is extremely pleased to assist ACH with the development, implementation and operation of their HFDM/FOQA program. Bringing active flight data monitoring to HEMS operations will be an important factor in identifying threats and providing mitigation strategies to improve safety and efficiencies for this segment of aviation,” Lau said.
Tying it all together: Of interest, ACH recently began utilizing Baldwin Aviation’s SMSplus® program. SMSplus® is an on-line, turnkey program that focuses on human factors and procedures. Baldwin Aviation will assist ACH in developing a specific Safety Management program that’s tailored to ACH specific needs while the ACH HFDM program concentrates on collecting, managing and analyzing objective flight data. Combined, the two programs compliment each other by providing insight into flight operations and utilizing both subjective and objective data. After the formative period of the HFDM (FDMplus®) program, both programs will be integrated under the Baldwin Aviation “Power of Plus” program to provide ACH with a comprehensive Web-based safety management tool.
“Combining the SMSplus® and FDMplus® programs for the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Team makes perfect sense and provides ACH with added opportunities to improve efficiency and safety levels of their flight operations while reducing operating cost,” Don Baldwin, Baldwin Aviation President, noted.
Aviation companies announce contract for first-ever complete flight data monitoring services for general aviation aircraft modeled on FAA's flight operational quality assurance program.
Aviation Companies Team to Provide First-Ever Complete Flight Data Monitoring System for GA Aircraft
The teaming agreement is intended to make the affordable, one-stop shop technology, previously too expensive for general aviation operators, more user-friendly for Cirrus and other single-engine...
The GA-FDM system provides a web-enabled Digital Flight Data Recorder with built-in engine trend monitoring, embedded real-time flight analysis, and automatic wireless transfer for uploads via the...
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., March 15 /PRNewswire/ -- In a first for accredited collegiate flight training programs, GA-FDM ( http://www.ga-fdm.com ) announced at the National Training Aircraft Symposium...