This document describes guidelines, methods and tools used to perform the ongoing safety assessment process for transport airplanes in commercial service (hereafter, airplane). The process described herein is intended to support an overall safety management program. It is associated with showing compliance with the regulations, and also with assuring a company that it meets its own internal standards. The methods outlined herein identify a systematic means, but not the only means, to assess ongoing safety. This document does not address the economic decision-making associated with the safety management process. While this decision-making is an integral part of the safety management process, this document addresses only the ongoing safety assessment process. To put it succinctly, this document addresses the "Is it safe?" part of safety management. It does not address the "How much does it cost?" part of the safety management. This document also does not address any specific organizational structures for accomplishing the safety assessment process. While the nature of the organizational structure is significant to the quality of a safety program, this document focuses on the functions to be accomplished and does not attempt to define what the structure should be. The intent is to leave the greatest amount of flexibility to the organizations that use this document.
Some information was not included in the first version that we now have material to include. Also all aviation companies need to include the Safety Management System process in their safety process and therefore some of that material needs to be added.