Safe system of work: Aircraft ballistic recovery systems

Control Measure Knowledge

The presence, location and condition of an aircraft ballistic recovery system needs to be assessed from the exterior of the aircraft. If signage on the aircraft does not provide any indication about the presence of a system, it may be necessary to seek advice from a responsible person or specialist.

Personnel should not move or cut aircraft wreckage without first determining if there is an undeployed aircraft ballistic recovery system. If there is an undeployed aircraft ballistic recovery system, personnel should avoid the rocket motor when moving or cutting the aircraft wreckage.

Under normal conditions, aircraft ballistic recovery systems are not prone to accidental firing, as the rocket will only fire if the activation handle in the cockpit is pulled with sufficient force. However, the system may be unpredictable if the aircraft has been damaged.

Aircraft ballistic recovery systems need to be isolated to make them safe; this requires the assistance and equipment of a disarming specialist.

Aircraft ballistic recovery systems are self-contained and do not rely on the aircraft power supply. Therefore, isolating batteries and power supplies will not deactivate these systems.

Aircraft ballistic recovery systems may become detached from the aircraft during a crash, which could result in the presence of an undeployed system on the ground.

If still attached to the aircraft, it may be necessary to prevent the parachute canopy from dragging or destabilising the aircraft. This can be carried out by either damping the canopy down with foam or water, or by putting a heavy object on it.

The cordon distance recommended for an undeployed ballistic recovery system is 100m from the aircraft.

Strategic Actions

Tactical Actions