We have provided a critique and stress-test of the NATS strategic 10-year safety plan, assisted in identification and closure of organisational capability gaps to deliver the plan, and been involved in NATS human performance strategy.
National Air Traffic Services (NATS) has primary responsibility for the safety of UK airspace. Accountability for operational safety is shared with flight operators, namely the airlines. This is a huge responsibility with far-reaching implications for aircraft and passenger safety. The key metric for NATS is the maintenance of safe separation between aircraft in an operating environment which has seen a doubling of volumes every few years, coupled with an ever-increasing pace of technological change.
Our role in working with the Director of Safety and the Safety Services Division has been threefold. Firstly, we have provided a critique and stress-test of the NATS strategic 10-year safety plan, working with the dispersed NATS operating units at major airports and air traffic control centres to ensure that the plan was aligned with the needs of local safety requirements.
Secondly, we worked with NATS in the identification and closure of organisational capability gaps to deliver the plan. As with the first workstream, this involved us in supporting and facilitating widespread collaboration between the central Safety Services Division and all levels of management in the operating units.
Thirdly, we have been specifically involved in the content of NATS human performance strategy, helping the organisation identify key risks and mitigation strategies, particularly in respect of the safety-critical interface between automation and individual decision-making by air traffic controllers.
In all three areas set out above, NATS had already developed world-leading expertise. Our role has been to help NATS harness this expertise and achieve buy-in from operating units, partners and supply chain members. We continue to work with NATS facilitating the roll-out of these plans and frameworks.