WASHINGTON – William R. Voss, president and CEO of the Flight Safety Foundation, delivered the key note address at today's opening session of the 5th Annual FAA International Aviation Safety Forum. Voss's speech examined the important role that regulators play in maintaining the exceptional safety standard in aviation and called on the attendees to honor this commitment as a service to all citizens.
"I can think of few problems I have seen in aviation safety where the solutions were not already known. Aviation safety is limited not by our ability to understand, but our ability to act," said Voss. "Our ability to act is limited in turn by our ability to speak clearly to each other and to those that govern us about what we can do and what needs to be done.
"There is little question that safety management is the way of the future. There is also little question that safety management requires collaboration between labor and regulators. There is not a clear consensus about the proper balance between enforcement and cooperation.
"We don't have a lot of technical problems anymore. We have systemic problems that are sensitive and difficult to address. Perhaps today we could start by talking with each other about those difficult issues that lie below the surface."
The FAA Forum is expected to attract more than 400 regulators from around the world. Voss' speech is available on the FSF website at www.flightsafety.org.