NTSB Zeros In on Public Aircraft Safety

Firefighting, search-and-rescue missions among those to be evaluated.

Wildfire

Wildfire

** Public aircraft are used to complete a variety
of critical missions, including firefighting
and search and rescue.**

In the aftermath of recent crashes involving public aircraft, the NTSB is holding a two-day forum to address oversight issues that that it says could compromise safety during search-and-rescue, firefighting, law enforcement and other critical operations that frequently rely on public-use aircraft.

A number of recent accidents have thrust this issue into the spotlight, such as the 2009 fatal crash of an Agusta A109E during a search-and-rescue mission, as well as the 2008 crash of a Sikorsky S-61N that killed seven firefighters, the pilot and one Forest Service inspector pilot.

During the NTSB forum, federal, state and local government representatives will join panelists from aviation industry trade associations and civil operators to discuss measures that could prevent similar accidents in the future and alter the safety cultures at organizations where individuals frequently put their lives on the line to save others.

The forum will be held on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, 2011, at the NTSB Board Room and Conference Center in Washington, D.C. It is open to the public, and will also be broadcast live on www.ntsb.gov.