By Amy Robinson, Naval Safety Center Safety Promotions
NORFOLK, Va. - The Naval School of Aviation Safety (SAS) was designated an Echelon 3 command under the Naval Safety Center (NAVSAFECEN) during a ceremony last month at the schoolhouse onboard Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida.
The school, which aligned under NAVSAFECEN in 2013, trains aviation officers in several areas of safety, including hazard identification, risk management, mishap reporting and investigation, and how to assist the fleet with safety matters.
Rear Adm. F.R. “Lucky” Luchtman, NAVSAFECEN commander, attended the ceremony and recognized the work and dedication of SAS in its critical mission to provide quality safety training to aviators.
“SAS becoming a command means that naval aviation and the Naval Safety Center are taking the schoolhouse very seriously,” Luchtman said. “So much so that we decided to make it unique among all of the services in that we are the only community that now has an O-6 command training our safety officers.”
Capt. Scott Janik, who reported to SAS in September 2021, said it was humbling to become the school’s first commanding officer and an honor to be a part of SAS.
“Our professionals, both military and civilian, take great pride in the impact we have in educating commanding officers and safety leaders with the goal of seamlessly integrating safety into our daily operations,” Janik said.
One of the more unique ways SAS is able to leave an impact – and emphasize the importance of safety to its students – is through the use of its “crash lab,” a large hangar that houses various types of aircraft previously involved in mishaps. Essentially, the crash lab contains actual mishap aircraft exhibits that provide a realistic scene for students to analyze and apply the investigative techniques and procedures taught in the classroom.
“We understand the importance to the fleet of providing this education,” Janik said.
Through lessons learned and experience gained from the past, the new SAS commander said the school will continue to impart this critical knowledge on future naval aviators to protect our most valuable resources.
“It is our goal to ensure our people operate safely and effectively while executing their warfighting tasks – to keep themselves, our assets and our Navy mission-ready.”