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A Safety Case Report: Coast Guard Helicopter


A safety case report is a document that provides evidence of safety. In this light, the document aims at showing that, the facility can be used for a certain reason. In addition, it seeks to show that the facility can fit into a certain environment without failing. It includes the measures, considered in terms of designing the facility that helps to assure safety. There are various requirements for a safety case report.

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Safety Case Report

First, it is vital to identify the risks and dangers of the facility. If this is the case, the developer assesses operational and design risks. Operational risks refer to the perils which might cause inconveniences during operation. For example, a petrol engine vehicle has an environmental risk. In this light, the carbon dioxide fumes pollute the environment. This is a risk associated with the operation of the vehicle. On the other hand, the facility might have a risk related to the design. In this case, parts of a facility might result in inconveniences. For example, a high vehicle incurs a risk of instability, which might cause toppling.

Secondly, the safety case report must provide the control measures. It explains the systems that are designed to reduce the risk. Also, it explains the measures that mitigate loss in case of an undesirable event, ensuring that safety is assured. Importantly, the report must focus on the consistency and effectiveness of these measures; it must show the reliability and durability of the systems. This ensures that the measures do not work momentarily. Instead, they function on a real-time basis.

The safety case report should be designed and written by the developers only. The requirements consist in the fact that the developers have a detailed understanding of the facility. Consequently, they understand the risks associated with their facility. In addition, they understand the measures controlling the risks. Importantly, the law asserts that the creator of the risk must manage it. Therefore, it is the role of developers to evaluate their procedures, systems, risks, and processes because they have the knowledge related to installations and controls (Deragon 1986).

The case report must set the required standards of operation. It must show the context of operation; it must also identify the conditions of operation. This helps the users to maintain the right context of operation. As a result, the users play a part in maintaining the consistency of the safety measures. In addition, the standards indicate compatible equipment and items (Beard 1996). As such, the report seeks to eliminate the danger of using incompatible items, leading to technical failure. While designing a case report, the workforce must be included. This ensures that they understand the reason for this practice.

Also, they understand the procedures that are involved in the report and how they are implemented. This ensures that the workforce is driven by rationale rather than rules. As a result, they follow procedures, owing to reason rather than the force of regulations (Marciano & Josselin 2002). Therefore, the workforce becomes competent and reliable. When the developers produce the safety case, they should understand that it will be evaluated by other parties. These parties include the government and other independent bodies.


  1. Control of noise at work regulation 2005 (Lowe 2010).
  2. Health and Safety Act 1974 (Lowe 2010).
  3. Local Transport Act 2008.
  4. Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation Order 2007.
  5. Civil Aviation Act 2012.

Coast Guard Helicopter

The Coast Guard Helicopter is a motor that operates through air flights. In abbreviation, it is referred to as CGH. The Coast Guard Helicopter has been used widely across the world, including the USA and the United Kingdom (Markovics 2012). Therefore, this paper seeks to focus on the different factors, associated with the vehicle, stating the risks that go hand in hand with these factors.

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CGH Roles

CGH ensures that the emergency calls are attended to quickly and efficiently because they fly at an extremely high speed. Moreover, they are not limited to geographical conditions. This implies that they can respond to emergency calls at all times. In addition, the helicopter is used to locate people during a disaster, such as tsunamis, earthquakes, and collapsed buildings. They fly at a low altitude above the ground (Oliver 1953).

This makes it possible to identify people on the ground. Then, they use distinct gargets to pull and rescue them. In some cases, rescue teams use parachutes and drop to the ground. This enables them to reach the victims and rescue them. Importantly, hospitals have been using the Coast Guard Helicopter to respond to medical issues across the UK. They use the helicopter to attend to the casualties (Roberts 2007).

In this light, the victims can access the medication at the right time. As a result, it minimizes the number of deaths, owing to late medication because of the possibility of the CGH landing anywhere. Some hospitals in the UK have adopted the CGH as the main means of transport (Bamborough 2007). In this case, it is used to facilitate the transfer of patients from their hospitals. As a result, the medical system becomes fast and efficient.

CGH Operating Environment

There are various operating areas for the Coast Guard Helicopters. The helicopters operate mainly on the coastal waters but in different environments. The helicopter might operate offshore or inshore, which are surrounded by the coastal waters. In this area, the environment is characterized by high temperatures during the summer. The level of humidity is extremely high, owing to the high temperatures that contribute to the evaporation of the seawater. The two conditions affect the operation of the helicopter. High temperatures need an efficient cooling system that can cool the engine of the helicopter (Wells 2011).

Therefore, a faulty cooling system can lead to the breakdown of the helicopter causing damages. On the other hand, the humid condition creates fogs. The fogs pose a significant danger to the operation of the helicopter. However, the constructors have ensured that the helicopter succeeds in operations. During a winter period, the area is covered with ice and has extremely low temperatures. The low temperatures might hinder the operation of the helicopter. In this case, low temperatures lead to poor combustion of fuel that deters its efficiency. Therefore, the designers have worked out systems that ignite the fuel sufficiently (Ruggeri 2007).


Regarding the personnel, it is necessary to remember that the primary role of the Coast Guard Helicopter is rescuing victims. Therefore, the person must satisfy this role. First, the helicopter has a pilot, who is in charge of the way the helicopter operates. In this light, the pilot is in charge of directing the helicopter towards the desired destination. In this case, the pilot makes a crucial decision, concerning the speed and the ceiling of the helicopter.

This implies that the success of an operation relies on the decision of the pilot. However, there is a risk that revolves around a pilot. In this light, the pilot might get tired during the flight. Therefore, the second most crucial personnel is the copilot. The copilot takes over the pilot in case of any inconveniences. In most cases, they exchange the role in intervals, ensuring that they do not cause any accidents due to fatigue. Secondly, the helicopter carries the rescuers, in other words, they are responsible for rescuing victims (Lowe 2010).

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CGH Performance

The performance of the CGH is determined in terms of speed, distance, and altitude. In this case, the maximum speed of the CGH is 300 km/h. This speed allows the helicopter to reach the desired destination at the required time. Speed is the force behind the helicopter’s efficiency. Secondly, the helicopter can move for a maximum distance of six hundred kilometers without landing. The distance is sufficient for a single rescue operation. However, the government has built many centers, ensuring that the helicopter moves for a short distance only. Regarding the altitude, the helicopter can rise to a maximum altitude of 5000m above sea level.

CGH Operations

The helicopter has various operational services. During a flight, the pilot communicates with the Coast Guard Headquarters continuously. This ensures that the pilots are updated on the surrounding conditions. Also, the headquarters track the helicopter during the flight, ensuring that they can make interventions in case of a problem (Lowe 2010). The second operation is the takeoff operation. In this case, takeoff operation is facilitated by the main rotor. The rotor is designed in a manner that creates a difference in atmospheric pressure. Therefore, the pressure increases on the lower side of the rotor and reduces on the higher upper side of the rotor.

It follows the law of fluid flow. This difference in pressure makes the helicopter rise and take off. Another operation is the transit into patrol areas. The pilots make the right signals as they enter and leave patrols areas. The patrols ensure that airplanes do not enter into their jurisdiction wrongly. The helicopter searches and detects people or vessels, which is facilitated by the use of tracking devices and gadgets. In this case, the vessels make transmissions that communicate with the helicopter, allowing it to locate them.

CGH Functions

The vehicle can control the commands of the flight. In this case, it notifies the pilot about irregularities and unsuitable commands. In this light, the helicopter can resist a command that compromises its operation, so it denotes that the helicopter is self-regulatory. This ensures that the pilot does everything correctly. The helicopter can communicate externally and internally. In this light, it transmits waves to the headquarters and allows the internal personnel to communicate.

Application of Legislation

Regarding legislation, this paper will focus on the first legislation that seeks to control noise at work. Particularly, this legislation is the Control of Noise at work regulation 2005 in the UK (Lowe 2010).

The limits of exposure and Action values

  • This section provides the limits of noise action exposure.
    • This section provides the lower limit of exposure action to noise and sets it to 80 dB for the A-weighted scale.
    • The lower limit of exposure action is set to 135dBs for the c-weighted scale. This section applies to the helicopter workers.
  • It sets the higher limit of exposure action, which applies to the helicopter employees, at 135 dB.
    • The limit for noise exposure is set to a level of 85db in the A-weighted scale
    • The highest level of sound is set to 137dB for the C-weight scale.
  • This section aims at setting the limits of exposure to noise in working places which include the helicopter.
    • The lower limit of noise exposure is set at 87 dB for the A-scale.
    • C-weighted scale sets the upper limit to 140 dB.
  • This section allows employers to use the weekly noise exposure for the cases of varying daily levels of noise.
  • If the employer decides to use the exposure limits and disregards the action exposure values, the employer must provide noise protectors. The entire clause applies to the coast guard helicopter.

Risk assessment

  • This section provides that an employer who exposes the employees to noise that is above the lower limit of the exposure action should conduct a risk assessment.
  • The assessment takes place in various forms.
    • It might be particulate to working activities.
    • Levels of noise corresponding to working equipment.
    • Possible and maximum exposure to noise.
  • It provides the consideration included in a risk assessment exercise.
    • Duration of exposure, type, and level.
    • It should assess the effects of exposure on health.
    • It considers the health threat that might result from combining noise and toxic substances.
    • It assesses the effects that are induced indirectly due to the use of audible warnings and the noise.
    • It provides that information about equipment which has been provided by the manufacturer.
    • Alternative equipment that reduces noise.
    • Extension of the working hours that increase the level of exposure.
    • Information from the health surveillance.
    • The provision of protectors from the employers.
  • The assessment should be conducted at regular intervals. This is given on two conditions
    • It is done if the assessment is still valid.
    • It is considered if the working environment changes significantly.
  • The assessment is done upon consulting the employees or their representatives.
  • Assessor must record the various components of the assessment.
    • The results of the assessment must be recorded after the exercise.
    • Measure that control the risk.

All these sections must be followed during the assessment of risk for all the employees of the coast guard helicopter.

Hearing Protection

  • Employees who are exposed to a level of noise that exceeds the lower limit must be provided with the hearing protectors upon request.
  • An employer who cannot reduce the level of noise below the upper limit must provide the hearing protectors regardless of a request.
  • An area that exposes the employees to noise that is above the upper noise limit is treated in various ways.
    • It is regarded as a zone of hearing protection.
    • It is demarcated.
    • In cases of severity, the area is restricted.
  • The clause gives the employer the right to determine the employees who use the protective noise gears.
    • It takes place after consulting the employees.
    • It is done to reduce the risk of hearing problems. This applies to the coast guard helicopter holistically.

Maintaining and Using Equipment

  • The employer is given several mandates.
    • The equipment is beneficial to the employees.
    • The equipment that is used by the employees is in good working conditions.
  • Employees have been given several mandates regarding equipment.
    • The employee should use the equipment properly.
    • They should report defective equipment.

Certificate of Exception from Protection Gears

  • In case the protection equipment can cause more harm than disregarding them, the employee can be exempted from using the equipment. This exemption takes place only by presentation of a certificate.
  • The exception must fulfill various conditions.
    • The employer, employees, or representatives, must be consulted.
    • Other persons of the same calibers must be consulted.
    • The risk must be reduced to a reasonable level.
    • The health surveillance of the involved employees is increased.

The clauses that are discussed above are completely applicable to the employees of the coast guard helicopter. This implies that all sections of the five clauses apply to the employees. The employees include pilots, copilots, casualty attendants, and others.


The above report has focused on the operations, functions, environment, and performance of CGH. It has explained the risk that is linked to each of these factors. In addition, it has highlighted how the pilot has to control the risks to avoid accidents and damages. Therefore, it can be pointed out that the paper presents an accurate safety case report.

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Bamborough, H 2007, Health and safety strategies case report, Workplace Law, Cambridge.

Beard, B 1996, Wonderful-flying machines, a history of U.S. Coast Guard helicopters, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis.

Deragon, J 1986, Risk management manual for motor carriers, ATA National Accounting & Finance Council. Alexandria.

Lowe, D 2010, the transport manager’s & operator’s handbook 2010, Kogan Page, London.

Marciano, A & Josselin J 2002, the economics of harmonizing European law, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.

Markovics, J 2012, Today’s Coast Guard heroes, Bearport Pub, New York, N.Y.

Oliver, D 1953, Helicopters in the Coast Guard, address, Kogan Page, London.

Roberts, C 2007, Rescue helicopters, Chanhassen, Child’s World, Minn.

Ruggeri, J 2007, Helicopter safety, Petroleum Extension Service, Continuing Education, University of Texas, Austin.

Wells, R 2011, Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador offshore helicopter safety inquiry, Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board, St John’s.

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