The International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers’ Associations (IFATCA) held its 52nd Annual Conference in Bali, Indonesia last week. Hosted by the local Member Association, the Indonesian Air Traffic Controllers Association (IATCA), the conference was supported by the government as well as the local airlines Garuda Indonesia and Lion Air. The Minister of Transport of the Republic of Indonesia, Mr E.E. Mangindaan opened the conference. Representatives of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), the International Federation of Air Line Pilots Associations (IFALPA), the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation EUROCONTROL also attended conference.
The theme ‘Satisfied Controllers = Safe Sky’ aimed at raising awareness for the professional and social status of the Indonesian air traffic controllers. Improving safety levels by focussing on human factors and working conditions was a prime discussion point of the more than 395 Air Traffic Controllers from 59 countries present.
The conference agreed to cooperate with ITF and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to improve working conditions as the foundation for safety, efficiency and sustainability of international aviation on a global level. ICAO, IFALPA and IATA committed to work with IFATCA on regional and international issues such as the implementation of standards and recommended practices, the global air navigation and aviation safety plan.
The outstanding cooperation with ICAO will continue in the studies on Safety and Fatigue Risk Management Systems. “Addressing systemic safety will push our profession to ensure the required continued improvements in safety, necessary to meet the expected growth in traffic”, said Mr Brathwaite, President and Chief Executive Officer of IFATCA. The Federation will seek to have the outcomes of this conference adopted by states at the upcoming ICAO 38th assembly.
The conference remarked on the IFATCA/EUROCONTROL expert training on just culture (JC) as being a significant development. The main objective of this programme is the formation and training of independent Air Traffic Management (ATM) or aviation experts available to advise prosecutors and judges in case of criminal investigations resulting from aviation incidents or accidents. “The outcome of this programme will be of global importance”, said Mr Brathwaite.
IFATCA as a professional organisation is recognized as an important stakeholder in the aviation world. Constructive and meaningful collaboration with other international bodies, such as ICAO, IFALPA and IATA is paving the way for the challenges aviation faces in the years to come.