CAA Reporting System Defines 'Just Culture'

The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has published updated guidance to accompany its Mandatory Occurrence Reporting Scheme (MOR) including, for the first time, a formal definition of Just Culture reporting.

Just Culture principles have always been central to the investigation of air safety occurrences and are captured in UK law through the Air Navigation Order 2009.

The CAA definition of a Just Culture states:
  • Individuals are not punished for actions, omissions or decisions taken by them that are commensurate with their experience and training but which result in a reportable event; but
  • Gross negligence, wilful violations and destructive acts are not tolerated.
This position is in line with European Commission Regulation 691/2010.

Under the MOR Scheme any incident which endangers or, which if not corrected, would endanger an aircraft, its occupants or any other person, must be reported to the CAA. Since its inception in 1976, the scheme has been recognised throughout the world as being one of the leading sources of aviation safety data. Vital information from the database has helped maintain safety standards and identify developing occurrence trends. The scheme applies by law to operators of UK-registered aircraft, maintenance organisations, aerodromes and air traffic services providers in the UK.

Andrew Haines, Chief Executive of the CAA, said: The CAA gives an assurance that its primary concern in relation to the MOR scheme is to secure free and uninhibited reporting and that it will not be its policy to institute proceedings in respect of unpremeditated or inadvertent breaches of the law which come to its attention only because they have been reported under the Scheme, except in cases of gross negligence.

The guidance calls on employers to avoid disciplinary action against employees which might in future inhibit their staff from reporting incidents - except where action is needed to ensure safety. 

A full copy of CAP 382 can be downloaded here.


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