Human Factor in Aviation Maintenance

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Human Factors in Aviation Maintenance
SIM University, Singapore
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, USA

In the aviation industry, human error is consider as a major factor in most aviation accidents. Maintenance tasks that are performed incorrectly or are overlooked by maintenance crew would cause human errors. Examples of human errors in maintenance are installation of incorrect parts, essential checks not being performed and failed to install wanted parts. Among all aviation-related threats, errors made by maintenance crew are more difficult to detect and have the potential to remain dormant, affecting the safe operation of aircraft for longer duration.
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Conditions like temperature, lighting, noise control,

cleanliness, humidity and workplace design are considered physical environment. Cooperation,

mutual respect, culture of the organization, communication, leadership, shared goals and shared

values are important factors in an excellent organizational environment.


The standard human factors approach to identify skills, knowledge and attitudes to

perform each task in a given job is called Job Task Analysis (JTA). It helps to identify what

instructions, tools and other resources needed to perform each task. By following exactly to the

JTA, each worker will be properly trained and each workplace will also has the necessary

equipment and other resources to perform the job.


Resources are viewed from a broad angle, such as anything that is needed to get the job

accomplished. Resources that are tangible are test equipment, tools, lifts, computers and

technical manuals, and so forth. Amount of time given, level of communication among people of

different levels, the number and qualifications of staff to complete a job are considered resources

that are less tangible. The most important element under resources is to identify the need for

additional resources.

Accidents linked to maintenance

Japan Airlines Flight 123
In August 1985, Japan Airlines flight 123 claimed the lives of 520 people when it crashed into a
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