The Safety Beacon is for informational purposes. Unit Safety Officers are encouraged to use the articles in the Beacon as topics for their monthly safety briefings and discussions. Members may go to eservices Learning Management System, click on “Go to AXIS,” search for this month’s Safety Beacon, take the quiz, and receive safety education credit. Past Beacon newsletters can be found in the CAPSafety Beacon Archive.
When will the transition from SIRS to CAPSIS occur?
The anticipated transition date is July 1, 2022. On this date, all safety reporting will transition to CAPSIS and reporting in SIRS will be unavailable. Any reports made before this date in SIRS will still be available for reviewing and corrective action planning. Commanders and safety officers will be asked to help finalize all mishap reviews and corrective action entries in SIRS as quickly as possible so we can close the SIRS application and transition fully to CAPSIS. Data in SIRS will continue to be used for historical analysis.
Where can I find more information about CAPSIS?
The draft CAPSIS Guides and some additional information can be found at CAPSafety Information System | Civil Air Patrol National Headquarters (gocivilairpatrol.com). We will keep this page updated with new training and briefing information for the next several months.
What can I do to help with the transition?
Talk with your leadership about the planned transition date and let everyone know that more information and guidance is coming soon. Keep an eye on the CAPSIS webpage (link above) and next month’s CAPSafety Beacon for new information and tools that will help with the transition.
As CAPSIS briefings and other information are posted on the website, use them in your safety meetings, email information to members, and ask members to review CAPSIS material to make the transition as successful as possible. When the training is available, encourage everyone to complete it and reach out to their safety officer with any questions.
When will CAPSIS training be available?
We have completed a prototype version of the training that NSOC 2022 participants will receive this month. Once we receive and integrate their feedback, the courses will be available in AXIS. A course listing will also be posted on the CAPSIS webpage and noted in the June 2022 CAPSafety Beacon.
Spring Cleaning: Hangar Housekeeping
Hangar rash, or damage to aircraft that results from ground movements into and out of a hangar, is still a very common and costly occurrence in CAP (on average, about $3,000 each occurrence for repairs). Almost all these occurrences can be significantly reduced by keeping hangars organized and free of unnecessary items, marking or lining parking spaces to ensure adequate clearances, use of spotters, and conducting an annual risk assessment. CAPP 130-3, Aircraft Maintenance Officer Guide provides additional guidance for conducting risk assessments:
No matter where the aircraft is parked, in a hangar or on the ramp, the [Aircraft Maintenance Officer] AMO will ensure each parking area has a Hangar Risk Assessment/Mitigation Plan. The plan must contain the following information: Hangar location and description, Identification of any hazards/risks to parking/moving the aircraft, and Procedures to minimize the hazards/risks. The plan must be readily visible to pilots in the aircraft hangar and will be reviewed at least annually for any changes to the hangar that might cause a higher operational risk and must be submitted to the Wing/SE for approval. A review date must be included on the approved/signed plan.
CAP’s Risk Management Process and CAPF 160HL are also valuable tools that support implementing the above guidance. Safety Officers can be an excellent resource to advise AMOs on using the process and form.
Impact of COVID-19 on Pilot Proficiency
In February 2021, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) published a risk analysis of COVID-19’s impact on pilot proficiency. Successful aviation operations depend on pilot proficiency, and the FAA notes that five factors primarily contribute to loss of control accidents in general aviation: disorientation, distraction, startled response, lack of aircraft handling skills, and inadequate risk assessment. ERAU’s report states that “any deficiency in pilot proficiency poses a threat to aviation safety,” and goes on to state that a “pilot’s competency depends highly on how frequently they perform the critical skills associated with safe flying.” Pilot proficiency is a key factor in CAP’s readiness, reliability, and credibility, which depends as much on safe outcomes as it does on other aspects of mission success.
Things to consider
Legal to fly does not mean proficient to fly
Non-practice of skills leads to skill degradation (and increased risk to safe flying)
The motor and cognitive skills needed for safe flying are dependent on how frequently they are used
The skills you should practice most are the ones usually used the least (think: emergency procedures)
What can you do?
Go beyond currency, and up your proficiency game: steep turns, recovery from unusual flight attitudes, partial flap configuration stall prevention, clean configuration stall prevention, landing configuration stall prevention, instrument procedures, and emergency procedures (just to name a few)
Fly with an experienced instructor and get feedback on your performance
Define clear personal minimums based on your experience and proficiency and stick with them
Include experience and proficiency in aeronautical decision-making and risk management
Take advantage of the WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program
National Electrical Safety Month
May is National Electrical Safety Month and a good time to evaluate meeting facilities, cover a few basics on proper use of extension cords, and talk about electrical safety while working from home.