Safety assessments are an essential part of an aircraft/system development process. System safety represents best practice and is formally specified by numerous National Airworthiness Authorities (NAAs) and Military Airworthiness Authorities (MAAs) including FAA and EASA. SAE ARP-4761 describes guidelines and methods for performing safety assessments associated with showing compliance with certification requirements (14CFR/CS 2X.1309). The safety assessment process is of fundamental importance in establishing appropriate safety objectives for the aircraft, systems and items and determining that the implementation satisfies these objectives.

ARP-4761A safety assessments are described as an integral process in ARP-4754A. There are fundamental relationships between safety assessments and the system development processes.

This 2- day course provides attendees with the knowledge to understand and apply the safety assessments techniques, as well as understanding the interaction between safety processes and the overall aircraft or system development processes. Workshop section improves understanding of assessment techniques on a case study. 1-day workshop section can also be provided separately.


Main Section (2 days)

  • Overview of the Relevant Regulatory Requirements (FAR/CS 2X §1309)
  • Definitions of Key Safety-Related Terminology
  • Probability Theory and Failure Types
  • Interaction Between the Safety Assessment Processes (ARP4761A) and the Aircraft/System Development Processes (ARP4754B)
  • Functional Hazard Assessment (Aircraft/System Level FHA)
  • Fault Tree Analysis (FTA) and Dependency Diagram (DD)
  • Preliminary Aircraft and System Safety Assessment (PASA and PSSA)
  • Development Assurance Level (DAL) Assignment Methodology
  • Common Cause Analysis (CCA)
    • Particular Risks Analysis (PRA)
    • Zonal Safety Analysis (ZSA)
    • Common Mode Analysis (CMA)
  • Failure Modes & Effects Analysis and Summary (FMEA/FMES)
  • Cascading Effects Analysis (CEA)
  • Aircraft and System Safety Assessment (ASA and SSA)
  • ARP4761A Best Practices & Common Mistakes

Workshop Section (1 day)

  • Safety program planning – Identification of the assessment techniques, determining the common data to be used in safety assessments, etc.
  • Function definition – Completeness of functions, and assurance that the functions are themselves safe when operating normally
  • Assessment of functional failures related to defined function using AFHA/SFHA techniques
  • Assessment of proposed architecture to determine that it may meet the safety requirements using PASA/PSSA techniques
  • Assignment of function and item DAL in PASA/PSSA
  • Evaluation of common modes and common causes
  • Identifying safety requirements
  • Verifying that implemented design meets the safety requirements using SSA/ASA techniques
  • Showing compliance to the regulations


Attendees may include systems or safety engineers, managers, software/hardware engineers, quality assurance or certification personnel; no prior expertise required.


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It’s been my pleasure to work with Nazan on multiple occasions, including attending her Safety training workshops.

Vance Hilderman
CEO, Afuzion Inc.