Singapore Confidential Reporting:The SINCAIR Programme


This programme was launched on the 1st of October 20041. The main aim of the programme is to, ‘enhance aviation safety’, through the collection of feedback on incidents which would remain unreported through other channels or appear minor, but which nevertheless allow others in the aviation industry to learn from, thus facilitating the development of any safety procedures and designs from these lessons learnt.

The SINCAIR Programme Focuses on;

Procedures and equipment, Human Factors, and systems rather than on the individual1.
It’s a programme that’s administered by the Air Accident Investigation Bureau of Singapore (AAIB), under the Ministry of Transport.

Scope of the SINCAIR Programme

The programme is interested with safety information from the following sectors1.

Ground Operations

• Cargo handling.

• Movement on the airport.

• Fuelling Operations.

• Airport Conditions or Services.

Flight Operations

• Aircraft cabin operations.

• Departure/en route/approach landing.

• Weight and balance performance.

• Air proximity events.


• Record Keeping.

• Aircraft Maintenance.

Air Traffic Management

• Crew & Air Traffic Control communications.

• Air Traffic Control Operations.

• Air Traffic Control equipment and navigation aids.


• Safety-related passenger handling operations.

How to Report

One can make a report either by going onto the AAIB Website and downloading a form, SINCAIR Report, or by calling the AAIB and requesting for a form to be posted out to them2.

Examples of scenarios in which a report should be made1.

• When there is no other appropriate reporting channel or procedure to go through.

• When one has used other reporting procedures and channels but their issue has not been dealt with or addressed.

• The reporter wishes others to learn as well as benefit from the incident, but he/she is concerned about the protection of their identify.


It should be noted however that this programme does not accept anonymous reports, this is because the reporter should be able to be reached to clarify information when necessary, so their contact details are required. It is possible that an incident that is reported through the SINCAIR is also reported to other authorities by a 3rd party. In such an occurrence the SINCAIR System can’t prevent the other authorities from taking action2, however the reporters identity will be protected by the SINCAIR Programme.

What Should Not Be Reported2

• Legal/Commercial disputes.

• Incidents/events that have no aviation safety content.

• Personality conflicts, personal problems and industrial relation issues.

• Accidents, serious incidents/criminal activities (these should be reported to the appropriate authorities).

Who Can Make A SINCAIR Report

If you do belong to any of the following groups below you can report on potential/actual hazards and deficiencies in aviation operations2.

• Airport Operations.

• Airport Employees.

• Individuals involved with general aviation.

• Air Traffic Controllers.

• Licensed aircraft engineers.

• Flight crew and cabin crew.

• Employees of maintenance, design and manufacturing organizations.

The Processing of the SINCAIR Report

Particular attention has been paid by the AAIB in ensuring that the identity of the person reporting the incident/occurrence (reporter) is protected during the processing of the report stage. Once the report is handed over to the AAIB its read and validated by the programme manager. It is during the validation of the report that the manager contacts the reporter if he/she has any questions or requires additional information2.

Once satisfactory information has been obtained by the programme manager he/she then de-identifies the information in the report and inputs the data into the SINCAIR Database. Any details that may reveal the reporter are omitted during this database entry.

If for any reason after the report has been entered into the database concerns are raised, a 3rd party is sought. Only the de-identified information in the database is used by the 3rd party during any enquiry, so as to protect the reporter’s identity.

Note; Once the report has been entered into the SINCAIR database and the manager is satisfied with all the acquired information, the original report that was made is returned to the reporter and no copies of it are kept by the AAIB.

Feedback to the Aviation Community

Those reports deemed relevant are shared with the aviation community through periodic publications, so as to enable everyone in the industry to learn from this incident or occurrence2. By issuing this information to the whole aviation community the relevant authorities involved are also able to review any policies, and improve their safety systems and procedures if they feel the need to.

It should be noted however that after the de-identification of the report, if the report contains information deemed urgent or of immediate threat to the aviation industry in any way, the report is first handed to the relevant organisation before its published for the public. This is done to ensure that the matter is dealt with urgently and any required safety actions are quickly implemented to protect the safety of the industry.


1. Toft.M.(2005). Confidential Incident Reporting System- Singapore Approach. Journal of Aviation Management. Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore: Singapore Aviation Authority.
2. MOT Ministry of Transport. Air Transport: The SINCAIR Programme. Retrieved 12 October, 2010, from

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Melanie AttanMelanie Attan

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