MANAGING Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) Captain Rabiu Hamisu Yadudu has said that as part of the safety culture and improvement initiatives, FAAN has put in place various methods to mitigate issues as runway incursions, Wildlife habitat modification to reduce occurrence of bird strikes and other means to make its airports nationwide safe.
Captain Yadudu made this known during his presentation: Airport Operations and Standards of Safety in Nigeria at the Leadership Impact Program of the Charted Institute of Logistics and Transport held at Sheraton Hotel and suites.
According to Yadudu, to ensure the safety at the nation’s aerodromes, the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) conducts Aerodrome safety oversight, audits and inspections, which he said are, determined by various circumstances.
The FAAN helmsman said that the NCAA has a surveillance policy where they carry out safety audit on aspects of the aerodrome multiple times every year.
He highlighted them stating that there were three Apron Safety/ Management inspections each calendar year, three (3) Bird and Wildlife Hazard Control inspections each calendar year while there are also three (3) Aviation Rescue and Fire Fighting Service (ARFFS) inspections each calendar year
Other annual inspections include two obstacles chart/Control inspections each calendar year, three airfield Lightings/Visual Aids inspections and two terminal/Cargo Building facilities inspections each calendar year stating that the frequency may increase if a major renovation
He went on to explain that against the backdrop of ensuring the airport is safe, FAAN has layers of safety committees which effectively deals with issues from prevention of runway incursions, excursions to accidents.
“These committees include: The Bird and Wildlife Hazard Committee, Runway Safety Committee and Aerodrome safety oversight programmes are constantly carried out by the NCAA and various certified personnel i.e. audit, inspections and surveillance.
“The reporting of safety hazards and occurrences is encouraged at every level in the organization. This promotes learning from these events and discussing solutions, which invariably leads to a continuous reduction in the rate of accidents at the airports.
“Likewise, the complexities of airport operations in the major aerodromes requires continuous hazard identification and risk mitigation measures. Investments in human capacity development by way of training and retraining, infrastructure, equipment, maintenance and technology are key, thus ensuring that safety is the driving force behind airport operations,” he said.
On improvement initiatives, the FAAN boss noted that in other not to become complacent and compromise safety standards at the airports, the airport authority has implemented some safety improvement initiatives
“Airport Infrastructure Upgrade ▪Commissioning of new terminals at Port Harcourt and Abuja. Kano and Lagos to be commissioned next year. Contract awarded for self-check-in, baggage drop-off and automated boarding gates as part of smart airport project which will be completed before end of next year. Closure of Enugu airport to fix the runway to ensure maximum safety.
Other include,” Work on the taxiway ‘B’ (central runway) at Lagos airport soon to commence. Wildlife habitat modification to reduce occurrence of bird strikes Human Capacity Development, Massive human capacity development through numerous International and In-house training and re-training programmes