Research Projects

Safety Management of Ground Handling Operations

Assigned to Erik Bullard
Last Edited by Erik Bullard

Develop guidance to assist airports in managing ground service providers and their equipment.

Background (Describe the current situation or problem in the industry, and how your idea would address it.)

The movement of aircraft and equipment on the ground can result in significant damage to aircraft hulls and airport infrastructure. Addressing ground handling processes and procedures in the context of airport safety processes, determining the best way for the airport to influence ground handling practices by tenants, and safety reporting procedures by ground handlers are areas that will benefit from research. Some airports in the U.S. have developed and implemented ground support equipment (GSE) regulations and standards for conditions and operation. Sharing such known best practices would benefit the industry greatly. GSE movement is just one component of the entire system and it needs to be managed holistically. The research should also include a holistic view of the entire ramp system inclusive of vehicle services roads (VSR), staging areas, service areas, and parking locations in and around aircraft gates. Additionally, pro-active inspections of equipment, the measuring the effectiveness of driver training, and the identification of the root causes of accidents involving GSE are examples of methods used in the field to improve safety on ramps at airports that the research could explore.

Objective (What is the desired product or result that will help the airport industry?)

A report with guidance to assist airports in managing ground service providers and their equipment.

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Idea No. 333