The Air Traffic Services (ATS) Quality Assurance process is a dynamic one used to continuously improve an Air Traffic Control system. The quality of the service is measured against such data as incidents, delays, employee and customer feedback. In addition, there are intangible factors, such as the willingness to function as a team, training and the actions taken to achieve the objective of zero ATS incidents.
Due to heightened awareness regarding Air Traffic Service incidents and their relation to aviation safety, the Jamaica Civil Aviation Authority established a Quality Assurance programme in 1997. The goal of this program is to maintain an incident-free, Air Traffic Services environment that delivers safe, orderly, and expeditious air traffic control services to the users of the system. A Quality Assurance Manual summarises the responsibilities of every individual within the Air Traffic Services operational environment.
The Quality Assurance Programme focuses on the identification and correction of deficiencies before they result in ATS incidents or accidents. It works towards the continuous improvement of the ATS product. Proactive quality assurance strategies are an integral part of the programme and are implemented as Rules and Procedures for appropriate situations or occurrences. The JCAA has also established Incident Investigation Panels and appointed a preliminary Investigation Officer in a bid to prevent ATS incidents and to work towards improving the quality of Air Traffic Services within the Kingston Flight Information Region.
This initiative complements the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Standards and Recommended Practices, as well as the Jamaica Civil Aviation Regulations (JCARs).Several ATS Quality Assurance programmes are already established. These include:
- ATS Refresher Training
- Quality Assurance Memos, Handouts and Guidance Material
- Internal and National ATS Unit Evaluations
- Simulation Training
- Aggressive Resolution of ATS incidents
- Taking-Over-Watch Checklists
- Incentive Recognition Programmes
- Promulgation of a Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management Manual
- Runway Incursion Prevention Programs
- Rules and Procedures for Proficiency Checks
- Rules and Procedures for On-The-Job training
- Staff /Team Meetings
- Familiarization Flights
- Pilot/Controller Meetings
- Bi-annual, mandatory psychomotor proficiency checks for all operational controllers