Effects of Aviation Resource Management Survey Inspections on Army Aviation Accident Rates Thesis

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¶ … Aviation Resource Management Survey Inspections on Army Aviation Accident Rates

G.W.L. BURNSIDE II

Worldwide Campus

Ramstein Germany Center

THE EFFECTS of AVIATION RESOURCE Management SURVEY INSPECTIONS on ARMY AVIATION ACCIDENT RATES

G.W.L. BURNSIDE II

This Graduate Capstone Project

was prepared under the direction of the candidate's Project Review Committee Member,

Mr. Bradford F. Kopp, Adjunct Assistant Professor, Extended Campus,

and the candidate's Project Review Committee Chair,

Dr. Franz Rosenhammer, Assistant Professor, Worldwide Campus, and has been approved by the Project Review Committee. It was submitted to the Extended Campus in partial fulfillment of PROJECT REVIEW COMMITTEE:

Bradford F. Kopp

Franz Rosenhammer, DBA.

Committee Chair

ii

ABSTRACT

The Effects of Aviation Resource Management Survey Inspections on Army Aviation Accident Rates

Institution:

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Degree:

Year:

2008Download full Download Microsoft Word File
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TOPIC: Thesis on Effects of Aviation Resource Management Survey Inspections on Army Aviation Accident Rates Assignment

The purpose of this research was to assess the effects of Aviation Resource Management Survey (ARMS) inspections on U.S. Army aviation accident rates. The hypothesis was that ARMS inspections decrease Army aviation accidents. United States Army aviation resources are an expensive, finite product in the budget of the United States government. The numbers of helicopters required in war fighting deployments have a direct impact in peacekeeping missions and waging war in global conflicts. The loss of United States Army helicopters directly impacts the mission, capability, and accomplishment of Army aviation in deployments and support missions to ground forces. The paper looked into the United States Army Europe and Seventh Army (USAREUR) aviation accident statistics over a four-year period (2003-2006). Additionally, the paper focused on accidents that occurred 90 days before and 90 days after an ARMS inspection. After an examination and comparison of the accidents occurrence 90 days before and 90 days after, conclusions were drawn about the affects of the process. The results were significant in favor of ARMS, thereby supporting the research hypothesis. This study will potentially support the efforts of ARMS inspections; saving our significant resources.

iii

TABLE of CONTENTS

PROJECT REVIEW COMMITTEE

ii

ABSTRACT

iii vi

I

INTRODUCTION

1

Background of the Problem

3

Researcher's Work Setting and Role

3

Statement of the Problem

3

Hypothesis

4

Significance of the Problem

4

Limitations

4

Assumptions

5

Definition of Terms

5

Acronyms

6

II

REVIEW of RELEVANT LITERATURE and RESEARCH

9

History of Aviation Safety

9

Accident rate

15

Associated Regulations

17

III

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

48

Research Model

48

Research Design

48

iv

Sources of Data

50

Treatment of Data and Procedures

50

IV

RESULTS

52

V

DISCUSSION

56

VI

CONCLUSIONS

57

VII

RECOMMENDATIONS

59

REFERENCES 64

BIBLIOGRAPHY 64

v

Table

1.

Classification of Accidents

9

2.

USAREUR Flying Hour Report

10

3.

Consolidated Accidents Report

11

4.

Raw Data Research Results

52

vi

CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

As the United States continues the fight in the Global War on Terror, military resources continues to be the defining factor. The use of military resources and their continued use results in defense spending on the upward trend. This spending is no more significant than in military aviation accidents, and with great significant in the United States Army aviation.

United States Army aviation resources are an expensive, finite product in the budget of the United States government. The numbers of helicopters required in war fighting deployments have a direct impact in peacekeeping missions and waging war in global conflicts. The loss of United States Army helicopters directly impacts the mission, capability, and accomplishment of Army aviation in deployments and support missions to ground forces. The expenditure of these valuable assets, to include loss of life, directly impacts the strategy of the United States Army. If present aviation accident trends continue, coupled with combat losses, the expectation of over one billion dollars in United States Army aviation accidents, Class a through C, will become a reality. This downward spiral in aviation accidents must be stopped.

The purpose of the Aviation Resource Management Survey (ARMS) is to identify and recommend for correction deficiencies in the Operations, Flight Standardization, Supply, Aviation Maintenance, Safety, Petroleum, Aviation Life Support Equipment, Aviation Medicine, Air Traffic Services, Training, Tactical Operations and Night Vision systems in aviation organization from brigades down to the detachment level. ARMS accomplish this in the conduct of an independent and unbiased appraisal of all aspects of the aviation unit's operations, personnel, and facilities. The results are then reported to the unit and Major Army Command (MACOM) for consideration and action. Currently there are twenty-three active duty Army and one National Guard MACOM organized within the United States Army.

The ARMS is the tool by which MACOMs access the aviation unit's ability to conduct its wartime and contingency mission. The survey is comprised of 12 different functional areas that exist within each aviation unit: Operations, Flight Standardization, Supply, Aviation Maintenance, Safety, Petroleum, Aviation Life Support Equipment, Aviation Medicine, Air Traffic Services, Training, Tactical Operations, and Night Vision systems.

In order to conduct these inspections each MACOM has a dedicated team of functional area experts that travel to different installations, normally a two-year rotational cycle. Checklists have been developed for each functional area; every subject addressed in the checklist is based on an Army standard that is derived from Army Regulations (ARs), Field manuals (FMs), Department of the Army Pamphlets (DA PAMs), Training Circulars (TCs), and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). Within the United States Army Europe and Seventh Army (USAREUR), USAREUR Aviation Safety and Standardization Detachment (UASSD) have that responsibility. The UASSD will schedule and conduct an ARMS of each USAREUR aviation unit. USAREUR's goal is to schedule and conduct an ARMS of every aviation unit on a 24-month cycle (AE Reg 95-1).

As of 31 December 2006, USAREUR experienced twenty five fatalities and an estimated loss of $164,583,907 due to Class a-C accidents within a four-year period (ASMIS Aviation Accident Data Base).

Background of the Problem

United States Army aviation accident rates continue in a costly upward trend that that negatively impact on future military budgets. During a four-year period (Fiscal Years 2003 thru 2006) the cost in aviation class a through C. accidents exceeded $164 million within USAREUR (ASMIS Aviation Accident Data Base).

Researcher's Work Setting and Role

The researcher has spent twenty four years in the United States Army working as an Army Aviation Operation Non-Commissioned Officer and retired as an Aviation Sergeant Major. The researcher served as the senior Aviation Operations Advisor to the Commanding General, Third United States Army, Army Central Command, and Coalition Forces Land Component Command, during combat operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. The researcher also previously served as the Theater Aviation Sergeant Major for United States Army Europe and Seventh Army in Heidelberg, Germany. While serving in the Army, the researcher assisted and participated in numerous Army Aviation accidents and incidents investigations. The researcher is currently a graduate student with Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

Statement of the Problem

In 1954 Army Aviation Training, an echelon of the Artillery School at Fort Sill, Oklahoma established the Army Accident Review Board. Its mission was to review Army aviation accidents. By 1957 the mission of the Review Board expanded and the Review Board was renamed the U.S. Army Board for Aviation Accident Research. It mission included not only aircraft accident review but crash site investigation and research into aviation safety matters involving aircraft design, operations, and training as well as supervision, maintenance, inspection and human factors. (United States Army Combat Readiness/Safety Center). Combat effectiveness is decreased and loss of Army aircraft and personnel is increased when the aircraft has not been properly inspected. Resulting from failure to inspect or failure of inspections due to lack of thoroughness results in a high risk to the Army aircraft, personnel and ultimately to the potential to conduct successful combat missions.

Hypothesis

ARMS inspections result in a decrease in Army aviation accident.

Significance of the Problem

Loss of any Army aviation combat asset; whether it be an aircraft or the loss of a flight crew becomes a significant loss and decreases our combat effectiveness. Success on the battlefield depends largely on our ability to reduce losses through decrease Army aviation accident rates. During the period 2003 thru 2006, USAREUR experienced a total of 57 aviation accidents (Class a thru Class C) resulting in 25 deaths and the loss of 14 aircraft.

Limitations

This study was limited to one MACOM, USAREUR, headquartered at Heidelberg, Germany, and will include class a through C. aviation accidents only. All Army aviation assets assigned to the USAREUR was included in this study. All accident data without regard to type of airframe was included. Ground accident statistics were not included in this study. All aviation accident data was collected from the Army Safety Management Information System (ASMIS) database located in the United States Army Safety Center, Ft. Rucker, Alabama. The time frame was narrowed to four fiscal years, 2003-2006. There are twenty eight MACOMs in the Army and limiting the research to one MACOM allowed for a more manageable population pulse, without too many confronting variables. This enables the researcher to complete the research in an adequate time.

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