Based on data developed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the Foundation estimates that 27,000 ramp accidents and incidents — one per 1,000 departures — occur worldwide every year. About 243,000 people are injured each year in these accidents and incidents; the injury rate is 9 per 1,000 departures.
Ramp accidents cost major airlines worldwide at least US$10 billion a year, the data indicates. These accidents affect airport operations, result in personnel injuries, and damage aircraft, facilities and ground-support equipment.
The Foundation decided this was a safety threat that had to be answered. In 2003, the Foundation launched the Ground Accident Prevention (GAP) program in response.
The GAP program developed information and products in a practical format — “e-tools” — designed to eliminate accidents and incidents on airport ramps (aprons) and adjacent taxiways, and during the movement of aircraft into and out of hangars.
The FSF GAP program built on considerable work conducted by the Airports Council International, Australasian Aviation Ground Safety Council, European Regions Airline Association, IATA, International Civil Aviation Organization, National Air Transportation Association, National Business Aviation Association, Regional Airline Association, and other organizations.
For more information on the GAP Program see “Defusing the Ramp” in the May 2007 issue of AeroSafety World.