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European Plan for Aviation Safety Workshop

The European Plan for Aviation Safety (EPAS) is built on a proactive approach to support the future growth of aviation while securing a high and uniform level of safety for all member states (MSs). This proactive approach allows the European Commission (EC), the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and MSs to take the necessary actions at the right time in order to prioritise the risks to be managed and to face the challenges posed by the increasing complexity and continued growth in civil aviation, as well as to ensure safe, secure and environmental friendly implementation of new business models and new technologies.

EPAS is consistent with the goals and objectives of the Global Aviation Safety Plan (GASP) to enhance the level of safety in aviation and to support MSs in fostering mature safety management capabilities.

This EPAS edition captures the GASP goals under a new vision: "achieve constant safety improvement within a growing aviation industry".

The overall safety objective is to maintain and, whenever feasible, to further improve the present safety performance level of the European aviation system in the face of upcoming changes. In the field of air traffic management (ATM), the performance ambitions adopted with the ATM Master Plan (ATM MP) reflect this overall objective. 

The 2019–2023 EPAS edition integrates safety information from various sources, such as the Annual Safety Review (ASR), the Standardisation Annual Report (SAR), and the ATM MP, which is the European plan implementing the Global Air Navigation Plan (GANP). The objective is to obtain an overarching, consolidated aviation safety picture at European level, supporting the prioritisation of safety actions. More specifically, as safety is the highest priority for the implementation of the European ATM MP, this EPAS edition embraces European actions stemming from the ATM MP. It thus establishes an initial alignment with the ATM MP. 

This EPAS edition reflects the new priorities agreed for the implementation of the new Basic Regulation (NBR), which entered into force on 11 September 2018. The related implementing rules will be aligned accordingly over the following years. The precise scope as well as the near-term priorities for 2019-2021 were agreed at the June 2018 EASA Management Board (MB) meeting, on the basis of a roadmap defining on the one hand how the work ahead to adapt to the NBR will be addressed and on the other hand setting related priorities for EASA rulemaking. While certain NBR provisions were already considered under the 2018-2022 EPAS edition, the NBR prioritisation has a major impact on this EPAS edition. 

As an integral part of the NBR roadmap, EASA will provide MSs with targeted support in order to complement the Standardisation activities and to reinforce the common understanding and implementation of the European aviation safety regulations, thus enabling a robust and harmonised European aviation system.

The 2019–2023 EPAS edition comprises two distinct volumes:  Volume I provides the executive summary as well as an introduction, describes the strategy and includes the key indicators. It consists of Chapters 1 to 4. Volume II contains the detailed list of EPAS actions. It consists of Chapters 5 to 8, dedicated to the four drivers ‘safety’, ‘environment’, ‘efficiency/proportionality’ and ‘level playing field’.

Strategic priorities are described in Section 3.1. The strategic priorities identified in the previous edition have been further refined and now specifically consider the safe integration of new technologies and concepts. As a result, all items previously included under ‘emerging issues’ are now addressed as part of this new strategic priority. A better link between EPAS and the EASA Standardisation process is presented in Section 3.2 Strategic enablers. This section includes also a new enabler, safety promotion and presents the first lines of a new strategic approach to communicate with the aviation community.

Chapter 4 ‘Performance’ now includes former Chapter 4 ‘Key indicators’, as well as a proposal for a set of performance indicators to support the monitoring of EPAS implementation and effectiveness of actions so that safety achievements become more tangible. These safety performance indicators (SPIs) do not override those established under the Single European Sky ATM Performance Scheme. The ASR is the document where the new indicators will be reported in the future.

For more information, contact russell.dudley@eraa.org