HISTORY

The Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority (AAIA) is the independent aviation accident investigation unit of the Bahamas previously under the Ministry of Tourism and Aviation and currently under the Ministry of Transport and Local Government.  The AAIA was officially separated from the Bahamas Civil Aviation Department on October 3rd, 2016. With the passage of the Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority Act 2019, the AAIA was transferred to the Ministry of Transport and Local Government. The AAIA investigates aviation accidents and incidents to find out what happened and to make recommendations so it doesn’t happen again. We don’t investigate to lay blame but to improve safety.

The AAIA works with aviation entities, airline operators and the regulator to ensure safe transport for the traveling public and industry. If things go wrong the AAIA steps in to see if changes need to be made to the overall system of safety. Often things go wrong in safety because we’re all human and prone to error, we know that people generally don’t intend to harm themselves or others, nevertheless mistakes do happen.

The AAIA, aim to understand why these mistakes occur to reduce the risk of them happening again. While we’ll never fully eliminate human error, we need to be sure that when errors are made, they are detected and managed.

The AAIA is the notification point for safety occurrences in the Bahamas, this means that whenever there is an incident or accident we need to know about it. The data we get from notifications helps us to analyze trends, find patterns in aviation safety and alert the relevant organizations to any ongoing problem or risk. However, to do this effectively, we need to be told, this is where we rely on people in the aviation industry.

Besides being a legal requirement, your notification could save a life, so even if you’re not sure, notify the AAIA. You can also confidentially tell us about safety concerns with total assurance that your identity will be protected.

The AAIA gets numerous safety notifications of aviation accidents and incidents each year, we take these to show the big picture of accident trends and what’s causing them. The AAIA does a lot more than just investigate accidents, while investigation is essential to what we do, equally important is the information we collect on safety-related events.

This helps us identify safety issues and trends that help us advise on what needs to be done to improve safety. We also educate industry and promote positive safety action through a range of educational materials. Through our safety watch initiative, we highlight the top safety concerns that come out of our investigation findings and from the occurrence data reported to us by industry.

We urge the aviation community to give heightened attention to the risk areas identified in safety watch, these areas where Bahamas’ aviation can make safe aviation systems even safer, it’s all part of our commitment to make aviation safer for the Bahamas’ traveling public and aviation industry.

Our Mandate

The Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority Act and Regulations 2019 required the Minister to establish an Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority which is responsible for advancing transportation safety in civil aviation by:

  1.   Conducting investigations in accordance with the powers and authority granted by the Act;

  2.   Identifying safety deficiencies as evidenced by civil aviation occurrences; and

  3.   Reporting findings and making recommendations designed to eliminate or reduce safety deficiencies.

 

The mandate of the AAIA is to conduct independent investigations, including:

  • the gathering, recording and analysis of all relevant information of an accident or incident;

  • the protection of certain accident and incident investigation records in accordance with the AAIA Regulations

  • if appropriate, the issuance of safety recommendations;

  • if possible, the determination of the causes and/or contributing factors; and

  • as appropriate, the completion of the Final Report.

 

The Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority Act and Regulations 2019 gives the AAIA:

  • The power to investigate, or arrange by contract or otherwise for the investigation of, accidents or serious incidents occurring in or over the territory of The Bahamas; or outside the territory of any Contracting State to civil aircraft registered by the Bahamas Civil Aviation Authority (BCAA), for the purpose of determining the facts, conditions and circumstances relating to each accident or incident and the probable cause thereof; and

  • The BCAA authority to participate in the investigation of accidents or incidents involving aircraft registered by the BCAA and occurring in the territory of a foreign State, in accordance with the provisions of any treaty, convention, agreement or other arrangement between The Bahamas and the State in whose territory the accident or incident occurred.

 

The AAIA Act states further that an investigation of an accident or incident involving:

  • Civil aircraft occurring within military sites in the territory of The Bahamas shall be the responsibility of:

    • the AAIA and the military authorities jointly, with respect to the power to investigate, or arrange by contract or otherwise for the investigation of, accidents or incidents involving civil aircraft registered by the Authority, and for the purpose of determining the facts, conditions and circumstances relating to the accident or incident and the probable cause thereof;

    • The Authority, with respect to taking any corrective action intended to prevent similar accidents or incidents in the future based on the findings of the accident or incident investigations authorized under this section;

    • Civil aircraft involved in an accident or incident with a military aircraft occurring in the territory of The Bahamas or within a military site shall be the joint responsibility of the AAIA Authority and the military authorities with respect to taking any corrective action intended to prevent similar accidents or incidents in the future based on the findings of the accident or incident investigations authorized under this section;

    • An aircraft of the armed forces of any foreign State occurring in the territory of The Bahamas shall be the responsibility of the military authorities.

 

The Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority Act and Regulations 2019 further states that no part of any report relating to an accident or incident investigation shall be admitted as evidence or used in a suit or action for damages arising out of any matter mentioned in such report.

About Us

History

Our Mandate

Our Staff

Contact Us

2nd Floor, Manx Corporate Center

#45 West Bay Street, Nassau, N.P., Bahamas

Office: 242-397-5509, 5513, 5514, 5525

24 hour Reporting: 242-376-1617, 376-8334

Email: baaid@bahamas.gov.bs

Fax: 242-327-2192

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