For Immediate Release

August 25, 2008
Contact: Paul Takemoto
Phone: (202) 267-3883

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. aviation system received a score of 91 out of 100 in a new safety audit released today by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), a United Nations agency that oversees international civil aviation.

“This audit by ICAO validates our systems approach to safety,” said Robert A. Sturgell, acting administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). “The results show that our priorities are in the right place.”

The U.S. score, which was well above the global average of 56, reflected U.S. compliance with over 9,500 international safety standards. The FAA led U.S. preparations for the audit, which also included the National Transportation Safety Board, the U.S. Coast Guard and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.

The team of ICAO auditors conducted a comprehensive audit of all aspects of civil aviation in the United States, including aircraft operations and airworthiness, accident investigation, navigation services, airports, personnel licensing and legislation and regulations. The auditors interviewed technical experts and conducted site visits to government and industry facilities to assess overall safety oversight.

The Universal Safety Oversight Audit Program was established by ICAO in 1995 at the urging of the United States. It provides civil aviation authorities throughout the world with valuable information on the overall health and effectiveness of their airspace systems.