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Ground Operations

Safety in the air starts on the ground

Ground handling is an integral part of airline operations. IATA strives to lead the industry toward improved safety and operational efficiency in ground handling by setting standards and assisting in the implementation of global solutions. 

Working with stakeholders

Airlines outsource more than 50% of ground handling and this trend is increasing. To support smooth cooperation between all stakeholders, IATA works with all airline partners, including ground handlers, airports, service providers, aircraft manufacturers, standardization bodies, and regulators under the umbrella of the IATA Ground Handling Council (IGHC).

It has also introduced the IATA Safety Audit for Ground Operations (ISAGO) to optimize and harmonize safety standards for ground operations for all stakeholders.

Setting the standards to improve safety & efficiency

IATA actively drives the development of ground handling operations standards and procedures and promotes global consistency and harmonization.

  • WHAT to do: the Airport Handling Manual (AHM)
    The only industry-approved standard for safe and efficient airport operations, and the reference for the latest ground handling policies and safety guidelines. AHM also includes the only industry-recognized contract template, the Standard Ground Handling Agreement (SGHA).
  • HOW to do:  the IATA Ground Operations Manual (IGOM)
    IGOM has been developed in response to industry demands for enhanced ground operational safety and damage reduction. IGOM is the core manual for all ground operations and provides standard procedures for the frontline personnel.

    More on AHM and IGOM.

The Ground Handling Council (GHC) work group is the important element within ground operation governance structure ensuring alignment and relevancy of all ground operations initiatives.

Risk management core to an integrated approach for ground operations

In addition to AHM and IGOM, the IATA Safety Audit for Ground Operations (ISAGO) and Ground Damage Database offer an integrated, unique solution to effectively manage risks in ground operations. 

 For more information review IATA Integrated Solution for Ground Operations (pdf).


Additional information

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