Chapter 4 - Quality Organization

4.1 Quality Control Program

4.1.1 Objectives

Once the Transport Canada Safety Management System regulations are implemented, document holders must have a Quality Assurance System that, for the purposes of ground icing operations, ensures that the established deicing and anti-icing processes and procedures are being effectively utilized by the employees, thus contributing to safe deicing operations.

Further, a Quality Assurance System should be one which:

  1. Can help identify deicing operation process or procedure shortcomings;
  2. Can assist in establishing a fix for the shortcoming;
  3. Can help incorporate the fix into the training program; and
  4. Can result in establishing a revised process or procedure to replace the flawed process or procedure; in this way the "Quality Loop" is satisfied.

4.1.2 Management Plan

According to Canadian regulations, the aircraft operator is responsible for the operational control of an aircraft. In order to properly exercise operational control under ground icing conditions, a Management Plan to ensure proper execution of the operator's approved Ground Icing Operations Program must be developed and implemented.

The Management Plan will identify the management position responsible for the overall Program, identify each subordinate position, and describe those functions and responsibilities needed to properly manage the Program. The Plan must also describe operational responsibilities and procedures, delineate the chain of command, define the relationship between its operations and maintenance groups, and ensure that all parties are informed of their responsibilities with regard to the Program. Although the Program is usually an operations responsibility, it may be shared between operations and maintenance. The Program may be the sole responsibility of operations, but never the sole responsibility of maintenance.

4.1.3 Scope

The scope of the Quality Control Program should include at least the following elements of a deicing program:

  1. Safety procedures;
  2. Deicing equipment, calibration, operation and positioning;
  3. Fluid application procedures;
  4. Aircraft specific techniques;
  5. Personnel training;
  6. Emergency procedures;
  7. Communications; and
  8. Records.

4.1.4 Operations Briefings

4.1.4.1 PRE-OPERATIONS BRIEFING

Prior to daily deicing operations, it is essential that all employees be made aware of the expected weather conditions, the anticipated aircraft traffic and any changes or non-standard equipment or procedures that may arise during the operation. This briefing is not only important for operational efficiency purposes but is a key safety of operations tactic.

4.1.4.2 POST-OPERATIONS BRIEFING

Following a period of deicing operations, once operations have ceased, it is appropriate for management to conduct an evaluation of the operation with the involvement of the employees.

It is recommended that each deicing operation be followed by a debriefing session with the participants in order to discuss operational matters, to evaluate overall performance by everyone, as well as to discuss any specific operational topics deemed necessary.

This kind of post operations debriefing serves many functions including: identifying safety issues; identifying process or procedure errors; identifying employee errors which require training; identifying deficiencies in the training program; identifying communication weaknesses; and identifying circumstances which, if changed, may improve the overall safety and efficiency of deicing operations.

4.1.5 Internal Audits

The Transport Canada (TC) Inspection and Audit Manual and the Commercial and Business Aviation (CBA) Inspection and Audit Checklists Manual (TP13750E) serve as guides for the conduct of Transport Canada audits, however, the principles and practices suggested by these documents may also serve the purposes of the deicing service provider. In particular, the "Ground Icing Operations Program Checklist", contained in the CBA Inspection and Audit (Checklists) Manual, may serve as an important guide on subject areas that should be addressed. These documents can be accessed via the Internet at the following web address: http://www.tc.gc.ca/

An Air Operator's approved ground icing program will be subjected to a Transport Canada audit on a regular basis as is required by regulation. A Transport Canada operations inspector may chose to inspect the operation at any time. However, a regularly conducted internal audit, by the deicing service provider, will provide feedback to company managers and thereby assist in keep the deicing operation safe and efficient.

It is suggested that these self-audits be carried out on an ad hoc basis with the results being discussed and documented at the management level. The frequency and the scope of each audit should be clearly identified in a procedures manual. A corrective action process should be established for items identified as a concern during the audit. A record of the implementation or disposition of the corrective measures recommended by the auditor should be retained on file.

Records of these self-audits should be maintained on a file to aid in tracking operational improvements or continuing deficiencies. The records may also be of assistance when it is time for a Transport Canada Audit.

4.1.6 Corrective Action

A process should be in place, which ensures that, internal and external audit findings are addressed in an appropriate manner through a documented corrective action plan. This approach serves several important functions, in addition to making the company management aware of perceived operational shortcomings, including: the recording of issues, the documentation of proposed corrective measures, the tracking of corrective measures completion, and it serves as a record for the future.

4.2 Record Keeping

An accurate, detailed record keeping system must be in place to allow easy access to all information pertaining to the deicing/anti-icing operation and fluids management. Care must be taken to ensure that not only is the information accurate but also that it is recorded in a timely fashion and retained for a minimum of two years.

The information may be kept in either paper or electronic format, as may be agreed in the approved ground icing program.

4.2.1 Minimum required records

At a minimum, the records that need to be maintained include, but are not restricted to, the following:

  1. Training is to include: individual's name, signature specimen, date of initial training, date of latest recurrent training, and the name of the individual providing the training;
  2. Acceptance of Glycol delivery is to include: date, batch/waybill number, time of delivery, refractometer and/or viscosity test results and amount received. Tests must be completed at delivery and at regular intervals. A test must be done each time a fluid is transferred. Records should be kept for a minimum of two years after use;
  3. Field Tests:
    1. For TypeI Fluid: label test, color, refraction, suspended matter,
    2. For TypeII, III and IV: label test, color, refraction, suspended matter, field viscosity test;

  4. Test frequency: see manufacturer product information bulletin;
  5. Equipment log sheets - a record of maintenance and repair work should be kept on each piece of equipment;
  6. Glycol mitigation plan - also referred to as a glycol management plan, must be available;
  7. Refractometer calibration;
    Refractometers must be tested at least every six months and immediately prior to the deicing season. The information that should be recorded, and which attests to the validity of the calibration, is listed below.
    1. Company name.
    2. Date of the calibration.
    3. Refractometer ID number
    4. Refractometer reading.
    5. Testers initials.
    6. Testers number/ID.

  8. Internal audit dates, results and actions.

4.2.2 Application report

It is recommended that a deicing/anti-icing operation form be developed which can be used to record the following required information.

  1. Operation record number
  2. Station identification
  3. Date/Time of operation
  4. Air Operator name
  5. Aircraft registration
  6. Type of Aircraft
  7. Flight number
  8. Weather conditions
  9. Aircraft condition upon arrival
  10. Outside air temperature
  11. Deicing location
  12. Quantity of glycol Type I used
  13. Quantity of glycol Type IV used
  14. Start/Finish time for Type I application
  15. Start/Finish time for Type IV application
  16. Refractometer reading for fluid in use
  17. Glycol Type I mixture ratio
  18. Deicing trucks involved
  19. Truck driver and operator identification
  20. Type of deicing/anti-icing requested by the pilot
  21. Remarks (eg Type of inspection)

This document will become the official record that the deicing operation was carried out. The signatures of the individuals that accomplished the deicing/anti-icing operation should be present.

4.2.3 Fluid Test Log

4.2.3.1 GLYCOL DELIVERY TYPES I AND IV FLUIDS

Each glycol delivery of Type I and Type IV is to be recorded on separate forms. The information collected should include:

  1. Date;
  2. Tanker/vehicle number;
  3. Tanker/vehicle arrival and departure time;
  4. "Seal number" which should coincide with the documentation accompanying the delivery;
  5. Refractometer test values;
  6. Colour verification;
  7. Fluid sample results;
  8. Batch number;
  9. Suspended matter notation; and
  10. Identity of the tank and location where the fluid was off loaded (fluid storage destination).

The records should be kept on file at the station for a minimum of two (2) years.

4.2.3.2 TRUCK REFILLS

Each time a truck/cart is partially or completely refilled; immediately prior to the first use of the equipment for the day or any time there is a deicing truck/cart crew change, a refractometer test must be taken and recorded on an appropriate form, to verify the quality of the glycol in the deicing truck. This information must be kept on file at the station for a minimum of two (2) years.

4.2.3.3 STORED GLYCOL TESTING

Fluid types, in their storage tank, must have a refractometer test carried out according to the following:

  1. Type I Fluid
    1. After adding fluid to the storage tank;
    2. Type I glycol stored in a tank must be tested once a month;
    3. Testing must also be conducted prior to commencing deicing each day during the deicing season;
    4. Records of these must be kept on a form at the station for a minimum period of 2 years.

    NOTE: TypeI fluids stored for more than two years should be sampled and the sample should be sent to the manufacturer for testing. Conformance testing to specifications for colour, suspended matter, pH, and refractive index are the minimum required parameters to be evaluated. A record of the manufacturer's test results is to be kept on file at the station for a minimum of two (2) years.

  2. Types II, III & IV Fluid
    1. After adding fluid to the storage tank;
    2. Testing must also be conducted prior to commencing deicing each day during the deicing season;
    3. Records of these must be kept on a form at the station for a minimum period of 2 years.

NOTE: Fluids stored for more than one year should be sampled and sent to the manufacturer for testing. Conformance testing to specifications for colour, suspended matter, pH, viscosity and refractive index are the minimum required parameters to be evaluated. A record of the manufacturer's test results should be kept on file for a minimum of two (2) years.

4.2.3.4 FLUID VISCOSITY TEST

TypesII, III & IV fluids are subjected to viscosity degradation when an incorrect type of pump is being used to transfer the product from vessel to vessel.

The sampling of a fluid's viscosity at the nozzles of each type of truck used by the Service Provider should be carried out on an annual basis for the purpose of analyzing the impact that the pumps have on the fluid's viscosity. The samples should be forwarded to the fluid manufacturer and the results should be kept on file for a two-year period.

4.2.3.5 REFRACTOMETER CALIBRATION

Refractometers should be tested every 6 months and prior to the deicing season. A record of these tests should be kept on file at the station for a minimum of two (2) years. The information recorded should be in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations.

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