The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has released its Annual Report, looking back over its accomplishments and challenges during 2016-17.
ATSB Chief Commissioner Greg Hood said the report described a year of significant change and evolution.
“The report outlines in detail our achievements and performance across the reporting period, and acts to further reinforce the ATSB as a trusted, world-class transport safety investigation agency,” Mr Hood said.
During the year, the ATSB received more than 17,000 incident and accident notifications, and completed 59 complex investigation reports and a further 110 short investigation reports.
The Annual Report describes changes, both in the transport arena, and within the ATSB.
One of the key developments has been the increase in use of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) or drones. In March 2017, the ATSB released its first research report on RPAS, describing how a steep rise in the number of RPAS in Australia has been accompanied by a similar rise in safety occurrences.
“RPAS is an emerging risk that requires close monitoring as the number of these aircraft continues to grow,” said Mr. Hood.
The ATSB itself also continues to grow and change. The past year has seen the Bureau become the national rail safety investigator, assuming responsibility for investigating all rail incidents and accidents for the states and territories. It also embarked upon a landmark recruitment drive and implemented a rigorous new strategy to address a backlog of investigations.
“We have taken significant steps to not only allow us to better address our key performance indicators in the future, but to improve and advance Australia’s transport safety investigation capabilities.”
There have also been changes in the way that the ATSB approaches its primary objective.
“We have become more selective,” explained Mr Hood, “investigating those accidents and serious incidents that have the greatest potential for safety lessons. In addition, we have pursued greater interaction with operators and regulators, and expanded our communications, education and promotion in a further effort to improve transport safety.
“I look forward to continuing to learn and grow in my role as Chief Commissioner of the ATSB. The years ahead will be exciting and challenging for the ATSB, and I am confident that the professionalism and capability of our people will ensure we remain a world-leading transport safety investigation agency.”Last update 30 October 2017