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Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting System of Sri Lanka

The Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting System

The Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting System is a voluntary, non punitive, reporting system established by the Civil Aviation Authority of Sri Lanka (CAASL), in line with the standards of Annex 13 to the Chicago Convention. This System provides a channel for reporting of aviation incidents and safety deficiencies while protecting the reporter’s identity.

The Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting System does not obviate the need for mandatory reporting of aircraft accidents and incidents to the CAASL.

Mandatory reporting of accidents and incidents will often result in investigations and safety recommendations. However, many incidents that have potential in helping to enhance aviation safety go unreported. As a consequence, many opportunities to learn from the incidents and thereby to prevent incidents and accident are lost.

The principal aim of the Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting system is to enhance aviation safety through the collection of feedback on incidents that would otherwise not be reported through other channels or that may appear minor, but which nevertheless can allow others to learn from the reporter’s experience and even lead to changes in procedures, practices or design. The Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting System focuses on systems, human factors, procedures and equipment, rather than on individuals.

Scope of the Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting System

System covers, but not limited to the following areas;

  1. Flight Operations
    • Departure/en-route/approach/landing
    • Aircraft cabin operations
    • Air proximity events
    • Weight and balance and performance
  2. Ground Operations
    • Aircraft Ground operations
    • Operations in the movement area of the airport
    • Fueling operations
    • Airport conditions or services
    • Cargo handling
  3. Air Traffic Management
    • ATC Operations
    • ATC equipment and navigation aids
    • Pilot and ATC communications
  4. Maintenance
    • Aircraft maintenance
    • Record keeping
  5. Miscellaneous
    • Safety related passenger handling operations

Flight and cabin crew members, air traffic controllers, licensed aircraft engineers, employees of maintenance, design and manufacturing organizations, airport operators, airport employees individuals involved in general aviation and general public all can contribute to safety enhancement through the Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reporting System by reporting on actual or potential hazards and deficiencies in aviation operations.

Reporting method

Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Report can be completed using the CAASL Occurrence report forms or specific form which is prepared for Voluntary Occurrence Reporting provided in the CAASL web site or available for collection on request from CAASL. The completed forms can be sent to the Director General of Civil Aviation, at the following address by denoting “CONFIDENTIAL” at the top left hand of the inner envelop.

Director General of Civil Aviation
Civil Aviation Authority of Sri Lanka
No: 04, Hunupitiya Road,
Colombo 02.


Anonymous reports will not be accepted and reporters contact details are essential. The Authority will not disclose the name of the person submitting the report or of a person to whom it relates unless required to do so by law or unless, the person concerned authorizes such disclosure.

Without complete information, the range of safety enhancement follow-up actions could be limited and as such CAASL requires amplifying or clarifying the information from reporter when necessary. Reporters contact details will also allow the CAASL to advise the reporter of the action taken or outcome arising from the report, before the report is returned to the reporter. Reporter’s identity will be protected by the system.

What should not be reported;

  • Criminal activities
  • Incidents or events with no aviation safety content
  • Personnel problems, personality conflicts and industrial relations issues
  • Legal/commercial disputes

When to report

  • When the reporter wishes others to learn and benefit from the incident but is concerned about protecting the reporter’s identity.
  • When there is no other appropriate reporting procedure or channel. (especially for members of the general public)
  • When reporter has tried other reporting procedure or channel without the issue having been addressed.

Processing of reports

  • The CAASL will pay particular attention to the need to protect the identity of the reporter in its processing of Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Reports.
  • Reports will be read and validated by CAASL. The CAASL may contact the reporter to make sure that the nature and circumstances of the incident reported is clearly understood or to obtain the necessary additional information or clarification.
  • When the CAASL is satisfied that the information obtained is complete and coherent, the information will be de-identified and will be entered into the database. Excessive details that could point to the source will also be avoided.
  • If during the course of addressing the concerns raised in the report, it becomes necessary to seek the input of a third party, only the de-identified data will be used in the discussion. Once a report has been processed (i.e. clarification obtained from the reporter; information validated and de-identified and captured in the database), the report will be returned to the reporter and no copy of the report will be created or retained. After the return of the report, there will have no more reference to the reporter.
  • CAASL aims to return the Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Report to the reporter as soon as possible. The time needed to process the report depends on the complexity of the case and whether the CAASL needs to discuss the case with the reporter or consult a third party (using de-identified data).

Feedback to the aviation community

  • Relevant de-identified reports and extracts will be shared with the aviation community. So that all can learn from the experiences and the relevant authorities and parties can review policy and plan for improvements.
  • However, if the content of a Voluntary Aviation Occurrence Report suggest a situation or condition that poses an immediate or urgent danger to aviation safety, the report will be handled with priority and referred, after de-identification, to the relevant organizations as soon as possible to enable them to take the necessary safety precautions.
  • A feedback on such safety improvements will be gathered from the relevant organizations and kept in record.


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