ICAO: Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP)

Background

The ICAO has launched Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) in 1999 to promote global aviation safety through the regular auditing of safety oversight systems in all ICAO Contracting States1.

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USOAP Timeline
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USOAP Principles and Audit Activities

USOAP is based on following principles:

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USOAP Principles
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There are eight critical elements that ICAO considers essential for a State to establish, implement and maintain in order to have an effective national safety oversight system. These include:

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Critical Elements
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At the 35th Session of the ICAO Assembly according to Assembly Resolution A35-6, it was decided to continue USOAP, but change the Annex-by-Annex approach to a Comprehensive Systems Approach, which would cover all safety-related Annexes (except Annex 9 and 17, which are subject to Universal Security Audit Programme (USAP)) and focus on the overall capability of States for safety oversight.

The audits under the comprehensive systems approach was launched from 1 January 2005 and consists of three phases1:

  • Pre-audit phase. During this phase, the information provided by the State in the State Aviation Activity Questionnaire (SAAQ) and Compliance Checklists (CCs) is reviewed by auditors. This allows ICAO to determine the level and complexity of aviation activities in the State and decide on the duration of audit and audit team composition.
  • On-site phase. During this phase, the State is visited by an ICAO audit team to validate the information provided by the State and conduct an on-site audit of the State‚Äôs system and overall capability for safety oversight. Under the comprehensive systems approach the Safety oversight auditors using the checklists known as audit protocols in the following 8 areas:
    • LEG-Legislation and Regulations, which covers the Chicago Convention
    • ORG-Organization & Safety Oversight Functions, which covers State Aviation Activity Questionnaire
    • PEL-Personnel Licensing, which cover Annex 1.
    • OPS- Aircraft Operations, which covers Annexes 6, 18 and PANS-OPS
    • AIR- Airworthiness of Aircraft, which covers Annexes 6, 7, 8 and 16
    • AGA- Aerodromes, which cover Annex 14
    • ANS-Air Navigation System, which covers Annexes 2, 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 15 and PANS-ATM
    • AIG- Accident &Incident Investigation, which cover Annex 13
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Sample Audit Protocol
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  • Post-audit phase. This phase encompasses all the activities following the on-site audit, including the preparation of the audit interim report, the development by the State of its corrective action plan and the completion of the audit final report.

Safety oversight audit reports and other safety-related information are available at the ICAO Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) Continuous Monitoring Approach (CMA) website.

The following is some examples of the effective implementation national safety oversight system of some audited States.

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Examples of Effective Implementation National Safety Oversight System
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References
1. ICAO (2010). Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP). Retrieved from ICAO on 14 August 2011.

Want to know more?

ICAO Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP)
ICAO Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme (USOAP) Continuous Monitoring Approach (CMA)


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Authors / Editors

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