“When we decided to pursue the IS-BAH certification, we had always planned to progress from the initial stage to Stage II,” says Hayward general manager Carlos Rodriguez. “For Stage I registration, we developed an entire SMS and ground handling manuals. To move on to Stage II, Meridian had to demonstrate that our SMS is maturing and evolving with our company needs.”
According to IBAC, the IS-BAH auditing process focuses on development of a safety management system (SMS) through a gradual process of advancing maturity. Stage I confirms that an organisation has established an SMS infrastructure and that safety management activities are appropriately targeted. Stage II ensures that the safety risks are being effectively managed. Although not a requirement, the company plans to pursue Stage III at some future point.
Stage II certification required significant involvement from Meridian employees. A total of 21 interviews with team members at both Hayward and Teterboro were conducted during this process.
“Our team demonstrated to the auditors that we are living our commitment to safety every day,” says Teterboro line service manager Victor Rodriguez. “Their participation and support were an important element in helping Meridian achieve Stage II certification.”
As part of his responsibilities, Victor oversees the safety and training programme at Teterboro. Carlos, who is also Victor's brother, coordinates Hayward's safety and training programme. Both have been instrumental in managing the IS-BAH certification process for Meridian.
“IS-BAH Stage II registration is a significant accomplishment for Meridian as it goes beyond having an SMS in place,” adds Carlos. “It demonstrates our commitment to a daily safety culture and shows our dedication to the highest standards in everything we do.”
The International Standard for Business Aircraft Handling (IS-BAH) is an industry code of best practices developed by the international business aviation community for the benefit of its members. The IS-BAH registration process, which was initiated in 2014 by the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC), ensures handling systems, processes and practices meet rigorous safety and security standards. The standard is based on International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards and recommended practices in the preparation of handling business aircraft. Both FBOs have been Stage I registered since June 2020.