Commercial aviation is generally perceived as being safe. However, it must be understood - and accepted - that aviation is a high-risk system. When an aviation system, or subsystem, loses the ability to manage changes or unexpected events in a timely manner, serious incidents or accidents can occur. It is only by continuously and meticulously managing risk correctly that the current positive safety statistics have been achieved and will continue to improve. Any degree of complacency will have negative consequences. Poor safety records usually occur where SARPS are not fully implemented or adhered to and/or risk is not recognized and managed in a timely manner.
To be managed competently, risk first needs to be identified and studied. One proactive method of recognizing potential system failures and predicting possible negative outcomes is to establish non-punitive reporting systems which is only possible in a just culture.
A just safety culture starts at the legislative and regulatory level and must be embraced by top management and at every level in that organisation.