Roles of Safety Management System (SMS) in Aircraft Development

Lee, Won Kwan;Kim, Seung Jo

  • Received : 2015.05.13
  • Accepted : 2015.07.11
  • Published : 2015.09.30


Safety is the first priority in civil aviation, and so the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has introduced and mandated the use of Safety Management Systems (SMS) by airlines, airports, air traffic services, aircraft maintenance organizations, and training organizations. The aircraft manufacturing industry is the last for which ICAO has mandated the implementation of SMS. Since SMS is a somewhat newer approach for most manufacturers in the aviation industry, they hardly believe in the value of implementing SMS. The management of safety risk characteristics that occur during early aircraft development stages and the systematic linkage that the safety risk has to do with an aircraft in service could have a significant influence on the safe operation and life cycle of the aircraft. This paper conducts a case analysis of the McDonnell Douglas MD-11 accident/incident to identify the root causes and safety risk levels, and also verified why aircraft manufacturing industry should begin to adopt SMS in order to prevent aircraft accident.


Safety Management System (SMS);Aircraft Manufacturing Industry;Design and Certification Processes;Human Factor Classification Analysis System (HFACS);Accident Prevention


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