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Accident reporting - What the law says...

Guest francis777

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Just been reviewing the law regarding reporting of incidents and accidents.

http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si1996/Uksi_1 ... .htm#mdiv1

Essentially any "reportable accident" must be reported to the AAIB by law. Failure to do so carries penalties.

The question is " what is a reportable accident? "

This is answered by the interpretation section 2(1) inserted below.

it is any occurrence that results in serious injury or death OR any incident that could have resulted in serious injury or death.

and an incident is:-

"incident" means an occurrence, other than an accident, associated with the operation of an aircraft which affects or would affect the safety of operation;

So anything that happens that could have ended up with the pilot of a paramotor being seriously injured or die is required by law to be reported, it is not optional.

The question to be asked is:- " if a hinge bolt of a swinging arm comes out in flight could it result in serious injury or death?"

http://www.aaib.dft.gov.uk/cms_resource ... amotor.pdf report into just such an occurrence concludes that it could.

Therefore the finding of a swinging arm hinge bolt loose on preflight is a reportable accident under that law!

If pilots do not wish to report through the BHPA (who are required by the AAIB to investigate non-fatal reportable accidents under that law) then would they report directly to AAIB please? the report precedure can be found here. http://www.aaib.dft.gov.uk/reporting_an ... /index.cfm

The purpose is not to attribute blame but to prevent recurrence, only by reporting can PPG benefit from the year on year increased safety record enjoyed by the rest of aviation and therby the AAIB and the CAA take us seriously as aviators.

Reporting an accident

24 hour Accident Reporting line: 01252 512299

General enquiries: 01252 510300

Press enquiries: 020 7944 3387

All reportable accidents are required to be notified to the Department for Transport.

The legal responsibility for notification of an accident rests first with the commander of the aircraft or, if he be killed or incapacitated, then the operator.

If the accident occurs on or adjacent to an aerodrome, then the aerodrome authority is also required to notify the accident.

[quote name="Statutory Instrument 1996 No. 2798

The Civil Aviation (Investigation of Air Accidents and Incidents) Regulations 1996 ]2.—(1) In these Regulations' date=' unless the context otherwise requires—

"accident" means an occurrence associated with the operation of an aircraft which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight until such time as all such persons have disembarked, in which—

"(a) a person suffers a fatal or serious injury as a result of—

— being in or upon the aircraft,

— direct contact with any part of the aircraft, including parts which have become detached from the aircraft, or

— direct exposure to jet blast,

except when the injuries are from natural causes, self-inflicted or inflicted by other persons, or when the injuries are to stowaways hiding outside the areas normally available to the passengers and crew, or

(b) the aircraft sustains damage or structural failure which—

— adversely affects the structural strength, performance or flight characteristics of the aircraft, and

— would normally require major repair or replacement of the affected component,

except for engine failure or damage, when the damage is limited to the engine, its cowlings or accessories; or for damage limited to propellers, wing tips, antennas, tyres, brakes, fairings, small dents or puncture holes in the aircraft skin; or

© the aircraft is missing or is completely inaccessible;"

"serious incident" means an incident involving circumstances indicating that an accident nearly occurred;

Purpose of the investigation of accidents and incidents

4. The sole objective of the investigation of an accident or incident under these Regulations shall be the prevention of accidents and incidents. It shall not be the purpose of such an investigation to apportion blame or liability.[/quote']

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I'm probably missing something but I think that reporting potential problems discovered during primary preflights are not in fact mandatory as the main body of preflights are outside the defined period, vis:

.... which takes place between the time any person boards the aircraft with the intention of flight until such time as all such persons have disembarked....

Once strapped in and ready to go, final preflights could/would indeed fall within that definition of course.

I guess it boils down to the common sense filter - reporting stuff that has a potential to be a generic problem either for all motors, wings or pilots, or by particular subset class of a particular model etc.

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The way I read it seems to match Francis' interpretation. An 'ACCIDENT' to be reportable, must take place in the course of a flight. An 'INCIDENT' can occur at any time.

If we were constrained to reporting incidents that only took place during flight, then by that reasoning, if an engine dropped off a 747 when it was say in a hangar, then that wouldn't be reportable. I doubt if that is the case.

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I posted this legal stuff in a different thread to the original discussion as I wanted to try and show the law itself apart from the various interpretations that can be put on it.

Obviously if an aircraft crashes and someone gets hurt thats "reportable". If it crashes and no-one is hurt then its still reportable. If it doesnt crash and no-one is hurt but it could have crashed then it is stil reportable..

Our judgemnet is whether, by reporting and innitiating an investigation, we will avert accidents for ourselves and/or others.

My point is that using the already tried and trusted system that preserves annonimity and protects financial and personal interests and is accountable under the law is better than just telling our mates and hoping that is enough.

In paramotoring there is very little reporting of incidents through this system and that is a big pity for all of us.

I am asking if the reporting function can be de-coupled from the BHPA as this seems to be the sticking point. Although the BHPA remain the only association that has direct access to the CAA and the AAIB through statutory powers.

The fact that the Incident reporting scheme happens to be currently run by the BHPA (actually just one technical officer who is employed by them) is irrelevant. It needs to be fed with the data so we can all benefit.

So be assured that anyone can report, you can remain anonymous and your favourite manufacturer's reputation will be protected. And you can report even the most minor occurence if you think it will contribute to safety development.

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