The National RPAS Safety Management System helps operators increase the safety of their flight operations by supporting the investigation and prevention of occurrences and by creating experience sharing environment.

Unmanned Systems Canada funded the Flight Safety Action Team in 2019 to provide strategic direction and leadership to ensure the creation of a dynamic community which empowers RPAS operators to share their flight safety related experiences and learn as an industry to become safer operators.

Several industry partners are now contributing actively to the initiative:

Benefit from Each Operator's Experience

The National RPAS Safety Management System collects flight safety occurrence data and supports the investigative and prevention process of all contributing operators. The collected data is then anonymized and aggregated to be shared with the contributing community, thus providing the members with a wealth of knowledge to learn from.

Practically Speaking

Benefits of contributing to the National RSMS

  • Increased operational safety and efficiency: Flight safety programs are meant to prevent the loss of aviation ressources. Appropriate reaction to safety hazard and prevention of their occurence can reduce unwanted expenses linked to incidents and accidents. 
  • Facilitated occurrence reporting: The questionnaire includes all necessary information to compliant reporting of occurrences. 
  • Increased knowledge: RSMS contributors gain access to a knowledge base to assist in navigating through flight safety investigations and the creation of preventative measures and gain access to the reporting database permitting the opportunity to learn from other operators’ experience.
  • Training tool: The investigative process and flight safety reports may be used within organizations to educate operational members on best practices and to increase their awareness and knowledge about safety hazards. Flight crews get to learn from each other and benefit from a broader experience. 
  • Competitive advantage: A solid flight safety program boosts the operators’ reputation to their clients and other stakeholders of the industry.

The questions are designed to lead the operator through a flight safety investigative process. The user first has the opportunity to specify the circumstances of the hazard or occurrence and assesses some of the most common potential cause factors. The questionnaire then moves on to examine the root cause factors in order to promote the creation of efficient preventative measures. 

The process thus goes as follows:

            ** Flight Safety Occurrence happens: either a hazard, an incident or an accident

  1. The RPAS operator collects all relevant information to investigate the occurrence: date, time of day, weather, type of operation, witness statements, pictures… the initial investigation form is provided to guide the operator through this process.
  2. The operator fills in a draft report on the RSMS platform which becomes available to the rest of the community. Other operators will be alerted to become more vigilant to avoid reproducing the same occurrence, and will be available to offer inputs in the further investigative process and in finding efficient preventative measures.
  3. The operator uses the full questionnaire to complete the investigative process and finalize the report with their official conclusions.
  4. The data is aggregated and sent out to the community periodically to ensure awareness of the potential re-occurrence and preventative measures to mitigate the risk of hazardous consequences. 
  5. The aggregated data is collected to analyze trends in the industry which will promote a better understanding of the actual flight safety risks, thus promoting the most adequate best practices and ensuring a safer use of the RPAS. 

The participation of every individual operator helps the whole community grow stronger.

Who gets to see the disclosed data?

All the data provided in the RSMS platform is anonymous. The disclosing operator is the only one who will have access to edit the provided data. Anonymous reports will be provided to the community in order to make the experience accessible to all and prevent the same occurrence of hazardous situations. 

Aggregated trend reports will be produced periodically and shared on the platform and during industry events to promote the best flight safety practices and increase the awareness of the industry’s top risks. 

Transport Canada will also have access to full aggregated and anonymous reports as tools to get a better understanding of the risks involved in the Canadian RPAS operations.