July 05, 2022


Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) www.sassofia.com considers Safety Assurance within the context of an Aviation Risk Management Process.


Safety assurance activities are at the core of the safety management system (SMS) that aviation service providers (including aircraft operators) shall implement in order to meet ICAO SARPS and regulatory requirements.

Considering the Definition of Safety Risk Management

Encompasses the assessment and mitigation of safety risks, the probability and/or severity of the consequences of the hazards are of such a magnitude, and the damaging potential of the hazard poses such a threat to safety, that immediate mitigation action is required.

Considering the Definition of Safety Assurance

  • EASA – Safety assurance – all planned and systematic actions necessary to afford adequate confidence that a product, a service, an organisation, or a functional system achieves acceptable or tolerable safety.
  • FAA – Safety assurance – Processes within the SMS that function systematically to ensure the performance and effectiveness of safety risk controls and that the organization meets or exceeds its safety objectives through the collection, analysis, and assessment of information.

Safety Assurance Activities Include:

  • Includes organisational arrangements and systematic processes for continuous surveillance and recording of the organisation’s safety performance
  • Evaluation of the safety management processes and practices.
  • Used as a means to demonstrate that organisational arrangements and processes for safety achievement are properly applied and continue to achieve their intended objectives.

Note: Safety Assurance should be intrusive and enquiring and not simply an administrative “box-ticking” exercise.

According to the ICAO Doc 9859 – Safety assurance includes the following activities:

  • Safety performance monitoring and measurement to validate the effectiveness of safety risk management.
  • Measuring the outcomes of activities that operational personnel must engage in for the delivery of services by the organisation.
  • Management of change – the aviation service provider organisation shall develop and maintain a formal process to identify and manage the changes within the organisation which may affect established processes, procedures, products, and services.
  • The management of change should ensure that required safety performance is achieved by reducing or eliminating the safety risks resulting from the changes in the organisation, the provision of services, or the operational environment.
  • Continuous improvement of the SMS – the aviation service provider organisation shall develop and maintain a formal process to identify the causes of sub-standard performance of the SMS, determine the implications of sub-standard performance in operations, and eliminate such causes.

SMS Safety Assurance Components include:

  • Safety Surveys – Carried out as a matter of routine, to recommend improvements where needed, to provide assurance to managers of the safety of activities within their areas, and to confirm conformance with applicable parts of their safety management systems;
  • Safety Monitoring – shall ensure that methods are in place to detect changes in systems or operations which may suggest any element is approaching a point at which acceptable standards of safety can no longer be met, and that corrective action is taken;
  • Safety System Records – shall be maintained throughout the SMS operation as a basis for providing safety assurance to all associated with, responsible for, or dependent upon the services provided, and to the safety regulatory authority. Safety records include all documentation produced and maintained throughout the operation of the SMS processes, including the risk assessment and mitigation documentation.

Next Steps

Follow this link to our Library to find & Download related documents for Free.

Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) provides Safety Management System Consultancy, Classroom, Webinar, and Online Training including the following course: SMS Safety Risk Management – 3 Days

If you need more details, please visit our websites www.sassofia.com and www.sofemaonline.com or email us at team@sassofia.com


Aviation Regulatory Requirements, Aviation Risk, aviation safety, Aviation Safety Management System, Aviation SMS, EASA, FAA, ICAO, Safety Assurance, Safety Assurance Activities, Safety Hazards, Safety Monitoring, Safety Risk Management, Safety Risks, SAS blogs