Tom Allett reviews a new operational training DVD issued by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH).
Watching this new training film on airfield safety took me straight back to my years as an airline employee and one particular incident that stood out from the rest.
A member of the ground handling team was removing the ground power cable from underneath a departing freighter’s wing one evening, when he became disorientated by the darkness, noise and prop-wash that enveloped him. He stepped back just a little too far and the back of his heavy duty wet-weather coat was slashed by a roaring propeller. I think it is a fair to say that he was within an inch of his life – quite literally. Even though I wasn’t part of the team that was handling the aircraft’s departure, seeing the poor chap in shock afterwards served as a lesson that even the most routine of operations have the potential to end in tragedy.
Not surprisingly, the oft-repeated idiom ‘Safety is no accident’ crops up during this DVD presentation and while some might regard it as a cliché, there’s no escaping the fact that its all-important message is as valid as ever.
This training DVD, shot at East Midlands Airport with the co-operation of several of its business partners, provides practical and worthwhile advice to those who are about to work on the apron (or ramp if you wish) for the first time, or perhaps returning to that working environment.
It deals with a broad range of scenarios. For example, the boundaries that define the differences between various technical sites, such as the manoeuvring and maintenance areas are explained and there’s vital hazard awareness information, including that relating to an aircraft’s rotating beacons or taxi lights. Helicopter ground handling operations are also covered.
This is a welcome addition to the training aids available on the market and is available free of charge from the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health.