Re: URGENT: Information please! Aviation Safety Reporting System

From: (Geoff Peck)
Organization: Geoffrey G. Peck, Consultant, San Jose CA
Date:         25 Aug 93 02:53:25 PDT
References:   1
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In article <airliners.1993.558@ohare.Chicago.COM> Pete Mellor
<> asks about anonymity and penalties associated with
reports to the ASRS (Aviation Safety Reporting System).

US Federal Aviation Regulations include the following section:

    91.25 Aviation Safety Reporting Program: Prohibition against use of
	  reports for enforcement purposes.
	The Administrator of the FAA will not use reports submitted to
	the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under the
	Aviation Safety Reporting Program (or information derived
	therefrom) in any enforcement action except information
	concerning accidents or criminal offenses which are wholly
	excluded from the Program.

The way ASRS works is that a pilot fills in a form which includes an
"identification strip" at the top.  The identification strip contains
the name of the pilot or other reporter, their address, and information
identifying the specific incident.  When NASA ASRS receives a report,
it is examined by an intake person who may call the reporter to ask for
additional information.  If no additional information is required, this
strip is cut from the form, marked, and returned to the sender.  Then,
the rest of the report (now anonymous) is passed to the rest of the

If the FAA decides to take administrative action against a pilot for
the incident which was properly reported to ASRS, the pilot may use
that little strip as a sort of "get out of jail free" card.  Only one
such "get out of jail free" card may be used by a pilot every five
years.  The result is that any certificate action (i.e., suspension)
and/or civil penalty will be waived, but the record of violation will
still be on the pilot's record.

Certain actions are specifically excluded from the ASRS "immunity"
program -- in particular, actions for which a criminal suit may be
filed, accidents, and intentional acts.