ASRS/ASAP reporting systems - how confidential?



Many people have hailed the implementaiton of NASA's 'Aviation Safety
Reporting System', and the 'Aviation Safety Reporting System' as
confidential means of reporting aviation safety related incidents that would
otherwise go unreported, due to the fear of consequences relating to 'human
error'.

The purpose of these two systems is very similar - to be able to provide
confidential input into saftey incidents in order that future similar
incidents can be prevented. These are supposedly purely saftey related
reporting systems, with an assurance given that no personally identifiable
information will be passed on or reports used to trigger a formal incident
investigation.

As such, I am concerned when reading a public, formal investigation report
that clearly identifies the specific incident, (in this case the crew being
distracted by an ILS lock failure during finals and going too low) and
states the following:

"The commander did not submit any reports about the incident. The co-pilot
reported the incident using both the confidential 'National Aeronautics and
Space Administration (NASA) Aviation Safety Reporting System and the
confidential 'Aviation Safety Action Program (ASAP). The flight engineer
submitted a NASA report."

There it is, plainly for all to see (including the flight commander) of
exactly who reported what to whom in a 'confidential' manner.

Surely this makes a mockery of the whole concept of confidentialy and
undermines the entire programme?


Tim





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