Business Aviation & Safety
Category: BizJet Advisor China
Author: Jack Olcott
Business Aviation & Safety
Peace of mind for you, your colleagues and your loved ones
Travel safety is a basic reason why companies, entrepreneurs and government policy leaders accept Business Aviation as a component within China’s transportation infrastructure.
Business Aviation is a marvelous way to travel. You establish your own schedule, you choose the people with whom you share the experience, and you spend time productively as you move from location to location. Furthermore, because business aircraft have access to more airports than scheduled airliners and many of those airports are closer to your desired destination, the time required to move between two locations is reduced—often dramatically.
In addition to providing more enjoyable, efficient and productive travel, business aircraft are machines of beauty. The craftsmanship of the passenger cabin matches that of the finest furniture and cabinet makers. The engineering incorporated in the aircraft’s design is worthy of a spacecraft!
The latest in communication technology connects passengers with associates and family globally even as the aircraft crosses continents at altitudes approaching 15 kilometers (which is higher than most commercial airliners operate). Advanced Instrumentation and navigation equipment enables your pilots to fly long distances efficiently. Ultimately, business aircraft represent the leading edge of advanced technology.
Passengers on business aircraft travel wisely. But all the highly attractive elements of design and technology described above would be worthless if Business Aviation were not a safe and highly-secure form of transportation.
First and foremost, Business Aviation is transportation. For any mode of travel to be accepted and used routinely as a component of a nation’s transportation infrastructure, it must have a proven track record for safety.
You can rest assured, Business Aviation is safe—in part because of the care that Chinese aviation authorities have taken to overseeing this form of travel: For more than a decade, leaders in Chinese aviation have studied and applied advances in aviation Safety Management Systems (SMS) to shape their governance of air transportation.
The SMS process, which is accepted as a world standard for safety, is a formal documentation of an organizational-wide approach toward safety. Starting with top management and extending throughout the company, a Safety Management System establishes for the individual operator a systematic approach to all tasks that impact safety, including department and personnel structures, accountabilities, policies and procedures. Each function of the flight operation is reviewed for potential safety risks, and procedures are established to assure the highest level of safety is pursued.
China’s scheduled airlines and Business Aviation adhere to similar safety disciplines and SMS procedures. The vast majority of business aircraft within China are managed by companies affiliated with one of the nation’s major airlines; Business Aviation and the scheduled airlines in China have achieved impressive records of air travel safety—truly world-class standards.
Measured by the International Congress of Aviation Organizations (ICAO), China’s aviation system ranks highly. When ICAO inspectors in 2007examined eight categories related to air safety, ranging from Primary Aviation Legislation to Resolution of Safety Concerns (and including Civil Aviation System and Safety Oversight Functions as well as Surveillance Obligations), China scored nine points out of a possible 10 in five areas, and eight points in the remaining three areas.
Safety experts such as Flight Safety Foundation President Bill Voss believe that China’s careful and comprehensive application of SMS is one reason why China’s record of air safety ranks very high.
Safety and Security
Business Aviation provides passengers with a unique assurance of safety partly because the business persons and entrepreneurs who select this form of transportation can, and do play a role is setting safety expectations. Business aircraft purchased by the Chinese buyer are modern and incorporate the latest design specifications, and most business jets in China (which numbered 132 in the spring of 2012) were manufactured within the last 10 years.
The company or entrepreneur has a direct means of communicating with the management company or flight department operating the aircraft, and is thus able to be more aware of parameters that affect the flight. For many business leaders, such awareness and feeling of control is reassuring.
Furthermore, it is wise for the Chinese owner to establish a dialogue regarding safety with the firm that manages and operates their business aircraft. Owners should ask about safety procedures used by operators to set, and live by a strong culture of safety. For example:
• Does the management firm adhere strictly to its Safety Management System?
• What are its procedures for hiring specialists who pilot, maintain and manage the owner’s aircraft?
• What are the transportation company’s procedures toward initial and recurrent training?
Security while traveling via business aircraft is particularly high. Only individuals known to the aircraft owner, aircraft captain or lead passenger are allowed to board the aircraft. No one remotely suspicious enters the cockpit or cabin of a business aircraft. Thus the risk of hijacking is virtually non-existent.
Should something untoward develop at the intended destination, a business aircraft can be diverted to a more suitable airport as directed by the lead passenger. No other form of air transportation provides such security.
While the owner usually is neither skilled nor experienced in the technical details of Business Aviation, the lead person of a company or enterprise using Business Aviation is the responsible party who can - and must - set high standards for the safe and secure operation of their use of business aircraft.
Peace of Mind Assured
Owners and operators of business aircraft, and all passengers who use Business Aviation, can be confident that they are protected by the same regulatory standards that are used to manufacture and operate the largest airliners.
Captains of business aircraft hold the same class of license as the men and women who fly the scheduled airlines. Flight department managers and aviation management companies employ safety oversight and training programs that are now the world standard for aviation operations—whether for scheduled or Business Aviation.
The bottom line is that Business Aviation assures peace of mind while you, your colleagues or your loved ones are traveling.