The Aviation Programmes

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CHIRP receives confidential incident reports from all of the previously mentioned groups in the UK aviation industry. On being received, reports are acknowledged, where necessary discussed with the reporter either by letter, telephone call or in a small number of cases by a face-to-face interview, and validated as far as is possible. The report information is then reviewed with the objectives of determining a cause and identifying corrective action(s). After ensuring that the report contains all the relevant information, if the reporter consents, the concern is represented to the appropriate agency and the reporter is subsequently advised of any action taken in response to the report.

The report is then closed and all personal details are returned to the reporter. Confidentiality of the reporting system is maintained by not retaining any personal details on the report database. Each report is allocated a unique reference identification; thus, after the return of personal details, CHIRP is unable subsequently to contact the reporter; however, the reporter may, if he/she wishes, contact the CHIRP office by using the report reference identification.

When appropriate, issues raised in reports are discussed directly with the relevant agency(ies). Only disidentified data is used in discussions with third party organisations, thus assuring the confidentiality of the reporter in any contact with an external organisation. Anonymous reports are not normally acted upon, as they cannot be validated.

Disidentified data is recorded in a database for analysis of key topics and trends. Disidentified data is submitted on a regular basis to the CAA (SARG) Safety Investigations and Data Department. Further disidentification (for instance of time and place, company, reporter's gender) is usually undertaken before publication in FEEDBACK or making data available to other agencies.

An email newsletter, FEEDBACK, covering current topics from disidentified reports, is sent four times a year directly to all commercially licensed pilots, air traffic controllers and engineering personnel with a circulation of around 32,000. Some reports are disidentified further (e.g. time and place, company, reporter's gender) before being published in FEEDBACK, or making any data available to other agencies. FEEDBACK maintains an awareness of Human Factors issues among the flying, air traffic controller and aircraft maintenance communities and provides a forum for discussion.

Separate publications titled Cabin Crew FEEDBACK, GA FEEDBACK, Ground Handling and Security FEEDBACK and Drone/UAS FEEDBACK containing reports of particular relevance to those sectors are distributed separately to the cabin crew, general aviation, ground handling and drone communities. 

In addition to maintaining contact with relevant agencies through the Advisory Board nominees, CHIRP maintains regular contact with the principal agencies in the commercial and general aviation industries through visits and presentations.

CHIRP is represented on a number of UK aviation safety bodies, including the UK Flight Safety Committee and maintains a close liaison with other UK and international Human Factors groups.

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