When working under the directorship as an Air Traffic Controller (ATC) all two-way voice communication, which includes both telephonic and the surrounding ambience of the control centre when in operation, are recorded.
These voice recordings can be used to:
- Help create data trails. Should administrators such as the Shift Supervisor, Regulator or Auditors need to listen to who has been communicating, and what has been said, they will have a complete backup at their disposal for this purpose.
- Assist in settling disputes or in the event of legal proceedings.
- recall recordings to be able to redress situation outcomes.
- Help boost accountability for radio users.
- Promote uniformity.
- Help facilitate better planning for safety protocols following review, and to follow up with the revision of these relevant policies wherever possible.
- Review customer complaints and concerns, and the subsequent actions that were taken at that time.
So, in a nutshell, ATC Recordings shall be required for radiotelephony messages and telephone conversations conducted during operational hours.
This requirement stands to reason based on the work responsibilities of ATC however, they are not the only discipline who use two-way radio communications as part of their work tasks and responsibilities. With this being the case, how do all the other users, such as ground base operations and emergency first responders for example prove their two-way communications when confronted, especially as recording someone without their consent is an offence. (Unless directed specifically by an Authority for example such as the process attached to ATC).
Should all disciplines involved in two-way radio communications consider benchmarking the process that is already tried and tested within ATC on a global scale? And, if they decide to follow through with this, who is going to make that important decision which will ensure that recordings can take place without any repercussions to the Operator based on legalities? Could the radio licensing Authority for each State, who ensure that their licensing stamp accompanies any transceiver, (two-way radio device) that is purchased by the user from the supplier, include voice recordings as a compulsory requirement for all two-way radio user`s, failing which the warranty for that product becomes null and void?
Maybe it is time for all Operators to stand together and consider not only the advantages of such a compulsory policy becoming a reality, but how this can have a positive outcome on, and within, their working environment. Without a proper system in place to monitor two-way radio communications in the workplace, is this not contributing towards a potential risk within your companies Safety Management System?
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