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2024 Safety Focus Areas and Resources

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Memo from CAP/CC

Make Safety Focus Year-Round

People First

Focus on Why

2024 Safety Focus Areas

CAP's Safety Culture

Risk Management Refresher

Airplane

Glider

Vehicle

Activity and Encampment


A Word from the National Commander

Memo from Maj Gen Phelka, National Commander

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Make Safety Focus Year-Round

While CAPR 160-1 requires a single safety risk management day early in the calendar year, the National Commander is encouraging all units to spend time discussing these focus areas often throughout the year. Doing so ensures expectations for operating without exposure to unnecessary risk are reinforced and reaches as many members as possible.

“Commanders of all active units will set aside one meeting day during the months of January, February, or March to conduct an Annual Safety RM Day. The sole focus of the day is a RM refresher for all members, specifically geared towards the hazards and risks they face in their daily lives, their CAP activities, and their specific missions.”

What is "unnecessary risk"?

All of our activities come with inherent risk. Some of that risk is the responsibility of members, meaning they are personally responsible for deciding whether to participate in an activity. Other aspects of activity risk are the responsibility of CAP and the members entrusted with helping us manage that responsibility. Unnecessary risk exists when our directives and guidance aren't followed or are followed incorrectly.

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People First

A “people first” approach to safety assumes that when caring and responsible people know why doing something is important and why doing it is in everyone’s best interest, they are more diligent in ensuring it gets done. 

  • We have some critical challenges to address and a lot of potential for continuous improvement – mostly in making safety more people-centric. Safety is not just a matter of following rules and filling out forms. It is a matter of caring for the well-being of ourselves and others, and taking action to prevent harm and promote health. Paper work can help document and communicate safety policies and procedures, but it cannot replace the human element of people work.

  • People work is the practice of engaging with others in a respectful, supportive and collaborative way, to create a positive safety culture and a shared sense of responsibility. People work involves listening to feedback, learning from mistakes, recognizing achievements, and empowering everyone to speak up and intervene when they see a potential hazard or risk.

  • People work is more important than paper work in safety because it fosters trust, communication and teamwork, which are essential for preventing accidents and injuries. Paper work can be useful as a tool, but it should not be the main focus or the sole measure of safety performance. People work is what makes the difference between a safe and an unsafe workplace.

  • To that end, it’s the time of year where we ask each of you to spend one day between the beginning of January and the end of March to talk about Safety Risk Management. Together, we can make the event more than a box to check or something we must do because we have a regulation that requires it. The power for making that shift is in members’ understanding that they are critical to ensuring every mission and activity is as safe as reasonably possible – as a “right thing to do.”

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Focus on Why

We care about each other, our resources, and the missions and activities that make us who we are. We all want every person to go home safely and our equipment returned undamaged. Both of those ends keep us ready, reliable, and credible in everything we do, and the diligent exercise of stewardship – a high degree of care and responsibility – provides an invaluable layer of assurance that we are. Regardless of the content you choose, talk about why it’s important to cover it, why it matters, and why it must be practiced. All the reporting and assessments in the world aren’t going to make us safer unless people hold safety as a personal value, which is demonstrated by acting in ways that reflect care and concern for each other and the resources entrusted to us. That ideal is more about guiding, mentoring, and coaching so people learn to use the tools that keep themselves and each other safe.

What’s the challenge? It takes time to engage with people, to help them learn and grow, and to help them embrace safety as a personal value. When you do engage them, you’ll find that there are a variety of attitudes about safety and that everyone has a unique view of what “safe” means and whether prevention is worth the effort when it comes to avoiding some outcomes. The investment of time and energy, however, demonstrates that leaders are actively helping members to understand potential hazards, assures members that they are concerned for their safety and the safety of their teammates, frames and plans activities that are suitable for members given the degree of difficulty, and helps members self-assess their abilities.

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2024 Safety Focus Areas

Regarding this year's safety focus areas, the issues are worth the effort to mitigate them either because they represent serious threats to our member’s wellbeing, costly in terms of equipment replacement or repair, or result in loss of mission capability. The key to managing the potential for harm or loss is taking the time to plan and prepare. When good planning is a part of missions and activities, uninjured people and capable equipment are available for missions which leads to increased trust from members, parents, and the public. 

  • Managing the potential for harm or loss is a crucial aspect of any project, activity or decision. Taking the time to plan and prepare can help to identify the possible risks, mitigate their impact and avoid unnecessary costs or delays. Planning and preparation can also increase the confidence and trust of the stakeholders, customers and partners involved in the process.

  • One of the benefits of planning and preparing for potential harm or loss is that it can enhance the quality and effectiveness of the outcomes. By anticipating the challenges and opportunities, one can design solutions that are more robust, adaptable and innovative. Planning and preparation can also help to avoid errors, mistakes and oversights that could compromise the results or cause harm to others.

  • Another advantage of planning and preparing for potential harm or loss is that it can improve the communication and collaboration among the participants. By clarifying the goals, expectations and responsibilities, one can foster a shared vision and a common understanding of the process. Planning and preparation can also help to resolve conflicts, address concerns and provide feedback that can strengthen the relationships and the performance of the team.

Region/Wing Emphasis Items - Regions and Wings should provide emphasis areas for discussion.  The Wing's Annual SMS Program Review is a good source for deciding on command emphasis items.

Local Emphasis Items - All units should discuss safety significant occurrences and the risk factors unique to their own units, their missions, their environment, etc.

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Safety Culture

CAP's Ideal Safety Culture - PowerPoint or watch a recording on WINGS Industry Network LIVE

CAP Safety Principles

Risk Management Refresher

2024 Annual Risk Management Review

Resources

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Airplane

2024 Safety Focus Areas - Airplane

Resources

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Glider

2024 Safety Focus Areas - Glider

Resources

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Vehicle

2024 Safety Focus Areas - Vehicle

Resources

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Activity and Encampment

2024 Safety Focus Areas - Activities and Encampments

Resources

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