IATA Survey Underscores the Imperative for Advanced Air Transport Automation

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently concluded its Global Dangerous Goods Confidence Outlook. Conducted in partnership with Labelmaster and the Hazardous Cargo Bulletin, the annual survey outlines significant opportunities for enhancement, notably in automation, data reliability, and consistency, to bolster safety and security in dangerous goods transportation. In this article, we delve into the survey findings and examine innovative technologies poised to streamline core operations.

IATA Survey Underscores the Imperative for Advanced Air Transport Automation

Understanding the Dangerous Goods Transport Survey

The Global Dangerous Goods Confidence Outlook is an annual report summarizing a survey involving 439 Dangerous Goods (DG) professionals worldwide. The survey explores the evolving landscape of DG transportation over the past year, including operational changes, challenging areas, compliance impact, and significant trends.

A notable takeaway from the survey is the sustained growth trend in the transport sector globally. While most respondents express readiness to handle increasing quantities of DGs, they also acknowledge potential areas for improvement. Automation and technology implementation emerged as top priorities, alongside the need for supply chain consistency and seamless access to reliable, accurate, and timely data.

Automating Compliance Processes

Given the volume of over 1.25 million DG shipments annually, the air transport industry faces stringent global compliance requirements. This area, which is poised to experience further growth, stands to gain significantly from technology as compliance demands rise.

IATA’s Senior VP for Operations, Safety and Security, Nick Careen, asserts, “The growth of e-commerce and the proliferation of lithium batteries in global supply chains indicate that the number of DG shipments will increase. To handle them safely, we must enhance compliance with global standards.”

The DG Survey’s key findings revealed that:

  • 24% of industry participants view DG compliance as a competitive advantage
  • Only 37% of organizations have implemented processes surpassing mandatory regulations
  • 39% meet the minimum requirements
  • 82% lack confidence that their DG infrastructure can support future supply chain changes or additional regulation
  • 48% had confidence in their DG compliance
  • 45% emphasized the importance of ongoing training

Innovative technologies can help automate key processes and ensure compliance at local, national, and global levels, thus achieving the consistency needed on a global scale. In line with the report findings, implementing the right technology can support “well-trained professionals following globally agreed standards“.

The Power of Reliable Data

For more than half of the survey respondents, access to comprehensive, reliable data is a top priority. Such data is crucial for enhancing logistics across the supply chain and enabling organizations to leverage sector opportunities.

Reliable, timely data access offers a transparent view of the operational landscape, essential for processes, compliance, and distribution in DG transportation. Seamless, real-time or near-real-time communication between systems and technology facilitates collaborative decision-making. In the DG sector, this enhances safety and ensures compliance.

Future-proofing through Technology

The right technologies can enhance DG operations and help future-proof the sector in terms of automating key processes and compliance. However, the choice of technology should align with the organization’s needs.

A comprehensive suite of technologies, such as cloud-based message distribution, handling database, and smart weight and balance tools like A-ICE’s A-MDS, A-HDB, and A-WBS, can offer the improvements needed without unnecessary complications.

At A-ICE, we specialize in developing fully integrable, key technologies tailored to individual requirements. We offer a suite of solutions with a unique pay-per-use economic model, providing a novel approach to automation and compliance. Ready to future-proof your operations through technology? Contact us today for a discussion tailored to your needs.


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