The recommendation was directed at six helicopter manufacturers to make transportation safer. The Helicopter Association International (HAI) has announced its full support of this mission. “With a few adjustments, such as the inclusion of piston aircraft and targeting the use of these devices to reduce the top-three causes of fatal accidents, HAI believes that the NTSB proposal could bring measurable safety improvements to the helicopter industry,” it said in a statement.
Flight-data monitoring (FDM) can be used to increase operational efficiency and identify hazards. HAI has partnered with the FAA Rotorcraft Aviation Safety Information Analysis and Sharing Program for the last several years to bring the benefits of data collection and analysis to more operators.
Some industry manufacturers are increasingly moving towards using more data analysis. For example, the majority of Airbus helicopters have data, imaging systems and audio recorders installed. However, the NTSB’s proposal targets turbine helicopters, leaving out the more than one-third of the US fleet that uses piston engines.
HAI said in its statement: “All helicopter operators should consider installing FDM as it will provide them with the tools to reduce accidents and improve overall industry safety. Besides promoting FDM within the industry, HAI will add installation of FDM and other NTSB recommendations to its Accreditation Program of Safety as an additional way in which participating operators can fly to a higher standard.”