Bristow, May 03, 2022 - Industry statistics show that 51 percent of all fatal offshore helicopter accidents are related to Flight Path Management. As a result of these statistics, HeliOffshore’s Flight Path Management Work Group was established to develop recommended practices and implement those recommendations across the industry through collaboration.
During the HeliOffshore Conference held April 23-24, Sean Reid, the Senior Training Captain for the AW139 for Bristow Caribbean Limited in Trinidad was recognized with the Safety Champion Award for his leadership, commitment, and vision to ensure that the Recommended Practices were implemented widely across the HeliOffshore membership.
“I was very surprised that I got the award,” he said. Since early 2021, Sean has led HeliOffshore’s Flight Path Management Work Group from across the industry, which includes competitors and energy company aviation experts.
“The Flightpath Management Recommended Practice (RP) for Oil and Gas Passenger Transport Operations was completed before I joined the work group and is now mandated by all major energy companies,” he said. “When I took over the leadership of the group in the middle of Covid it was to continue to build momentum and implement the document. Throughout this process we never stopped learning from the collective knowledge of the group and soon after started work on Version 3 of the RP.”
“My big motivation was an opportunity to have hands on input in reducing accidents. Why wouldn’t I jump at that opportunity,” he explained. “I will do anything that will help improve safety and HeliOffshore, and Bristow provided me with an opportunity to play a key role.”
Flightpath Management Recommended Practice
“The recommended practices are driven by data obtained through information shared from the HeliOffshore membership and governed by the Safety Steering Group. This data includes de-identified helicopter Flight Data Monitoring data that helps tell a story and provides insight into how pilots fly the aircraft. For example, when we reviewed this data it showed us that a lot of accidents were happening because people were losing airspeed in an energy state that was too low,” he said.
“We use the data that is available to the industry to come up with solutions, and we put the solutions in the form of guidance that can be adopted by the HeliOffshore membership. We are excited to continue to enhance flight safety with version 3 of our Flight Path Management Recommended Practice that is currently being drafted.”
Sean served in the Jamaica Defence Force Air Wing for 10 years where he flew airplanes and helicopters and was an instructor pilot. After leaving the military, he worked for National Helicopters in Trinidad starting in 2005, where he was promoted almost every year until he became the head of training and chief pilot before joining Bristow in 2018 as a Senior Training Captain.
In this role Sean is responsible for the training and standardization in the AW139 for Bristow Caribbean. He has more than 20 years of training experience and holds credentials from the FAA, JCAA and the TTCAA as well as previous certifications from the Canadian Air Force where he first learnt to be an instructor.
“The work with HeliOffshore assists me in doing my job because HeliOffshore not only does Flight Path Management, Bristow is also involved with other workstreams that focus on HFDM, HUMS, Pilot Monitoring Research, Focused Work, System Reliability and more. I get access to all this information. This access helps me boost and strengthen our training programs within our AOC.”
“We are so proud of Sean and his commitment to Target Zero transcends our organization and is positively impacting our industry through HeliOffshore,” said James Stottlemyer, Vice President, Health, Safety & Environment. “In addition to his daily responsibilities, he has worked nights, weekends and holidays to ensure the collective work of the Flight Path Management Recommended Practices are implemented and making a positive impact on the front-line operations of the HeliOffshore membership. The HeliOffshore Safety Champion Award was much deserved.”
We are so grateful to have dedicated Workstream contributors and leads like Sean who are making a very real difference to our collective safety performance with their efforts and expertise,” added HeliOffshore CEO Tim Rolfe.
Bristow Caribbean AW139 helicopter