News Brief November 2018



9 NOV 2018


There are significant changes with the latest version of CAP 437. We provide a detailed Gap Analysis with our Helideck Inspector Awareness Training courses, but the following identifies some of the more significant issues that need to be considered.

  • The final specification and installation arrangements for the Lit Touchdown/Positioning Marking Circle and Lit Heliport Identification ‘H’ Marking, has been finalised.
  • The requirement for floodlighting to aid the visual task of final approach, hover and landing is removed.
  • In anticipation of a comprehensive update to the heliport rescue and fire-fighting requirements in Annex 14 Volume II, Chapter 5 has been re-written to amplify new international best practices.
  • A further update of the helideck surface section is presented with the introduction of a new helideck contamination scale, waiving of full-scale testing of legacy profiled helidecks, and further refinements to best practice including an update to the Friction Survey Protocol.
  • The helideck should normally be re-tested annually. If the friction values (after scaling, where appropriate) exceed the values given in Table 3 by at least 0.1 in all required areas, then re-testing is not required for two years - this may be applied to helidecks tested up to one year prior to the date of publication of Amendment 1 to 8th Edition of CAP 437 provided that the testing and reporting protocol of Appendix G has been followed.



Flight Safety CEO, Colin Weir, recently presented at ROTORTECH 2018 on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, on the subject of Safety Managment System (SMS) failings.

A significant discovery has been made, following multiple audits and accident investigations carried out globally. Traditional Safety Management Systems structured in classic format, although compliant with regulations, often have serious, insidious failure areas relating to the Human Factor interface, where the autonomy of the system is compromised by individuals (executive management/management) and oscillating economic changes, usually involving a CEO and/or Safety Manager who are untrained or weak, a Board that dictates aviation policy, or a client that influences the integrity of cost management processes.

Either one, or all, of these factors could be in play at any one time - this latent failure potential has been identified in multiple serious incident, accident investigations and is not usually fully recognised and documented.

Safety Management Systems should be investigated for potential failure in these areas using Human Factors Analysis and Classification System (HFACS) & Human Factors Intervention Matrix (HFIX) investigative techniques.



The Flight Safety Group of companies is consolidating and expanding, a reassuring development after the extended downturn in the economy over the last few years. As often happens there is sometimes a positive side to these downturn events as it introduces a natural selection process, in keeping with nature and the ‘survival of the fittest’ concept.

Flight Safety is expanding its presence in New Zealand with the registration of Flight Safety New Zealand Pty Ltd and the award of a second-long term contract in the New Zealand Oil & Gas industry.

The appointment of an experienced helideck inspector/auditor permanently based in Perth has allowed us to start regaining lost ground that has affected us due to the downturn in the economy and the complication of additional costs in flying personnel across from the East Coast.

Flight Safety has also become increasingly involved in specialist – ‘Expert Witness’ and legal consultative work with the legal fraternity throughout the country, with positive results.

The two South African companies – Flight Safety Africa and Helideck Certification – Africa, are an astounding success story, through multi-faceted training, helideck inspections and friction testing, the companies are experiencing exponential growth, and this trend is expected to increase as the previous more localised area has now expanded into the whole of Africa and the Arab States.

The South African companies are currently in the final process of Lloyds Register ISO 9001:2015 Certification, in keeping with the Australian companies.


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