The mission of ECCAIRS is to assist National and European transport entities in collecting, sharing and analysing their safety information in order to improve public transport safety.
ECCAIRS (European Co-ordination Centre for Accident and Incident Reporting Systems) is a co-operative network of European Civil Aviation Authorities (CAA's) and Safety Investigation Authorities (SIA's) . The project is being managed by the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission (DG JRC) on request of the Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (DG MOVE) and in close co-operation with the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
In 1989, a study in the field of incident reporting systems was started by the European Commission. The study recommended the setting up of a European Co-ordination Centre for Mandatory Incident Reporting Systems. In this context the JRC performed a feasibility study into the integration of safety data information from various existing, incompatible sources. A secondary objective was to offer a reporting solution to those member states that did not have an automated system. The project was called ECCAIRS and in 1995 the feasibility of the ECCAIRS approach was demonstrated and the Commission started the development of appropriate legislation as well as the necessary technical solutions.
ECCAIRS is directly related to two European Regulations: Regulation (EU) No 996/2010 of 20 October 2010 on the investigation and prevention of accidents and incidents in civil aviation and Regulation (EU) No 376/2014 of 3 April 2014 on the reporting, analysis and follow-up of occurrences in civil aviation. ECCAIRS implements the safety data collection and dissemination requirements for these Regulations both in terms of occurrence reports as well as safety recommendations.
Member state safety information is integrated in two central database: the European Central Repositories for occurrences (ECR-ECCAIRS, required by Regulation 376/2014) and the European Central Repository for safety recommendations (ECR-SRIS, required by Regulation 996/2010). Both repositories are currently located in the Joint Research Centre. Access to the repositories is subject to strict rules and mainly limited to European competent authorities.
In 1998 the first version of ECCAIRS was released. Soon after that work started on extending this version to support new ICAO standards, new ICT developments and a new EU Directive (Directive 2003/42/EC). In August 2003 a new version of ECCAIRS (Release 4) was made available to the community. Around 2008 the JRC decided to redesign the ECCAIRS software to allow for more customisation by the users and to become usable also for other transport modes (railways and maritime). In 2011 this resulted in the current, 5th Generation of the software called ECCAIRS 5.
The ECCAIRS Reporting System (ECCAIRS 5) is subject to a License Agreement, which allows usage by various organisations in various places. The chosen approach is that transport safety is of global concern and its improvement should not be limited by geographical or organisational borders. For that reason any organisation can use ECCAIRS if the goal is to contribute to the improvement of aviation safety by reporting occurrence reports to (inter)national competent authorities.