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Tuesday, 16 July, 2019

NATA Introduces the New Safety 1st Training Center: The Next Generation of Ground Handling and Safety Training

The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) is once again revolutionizing training for FBOs, ground handlers, and other aviation businesses globally with today’s launch of the all-new NATA Safety 1st Training Center. The launch includes a complete rebuild of the program driven by specific input from our members and users, including:

   - Redesigned content, developed from the ground up, including new multimedia, photos, and audio.

   - A move away from the one-size-fits-all, single-certificate training model to a ratings-based approach that focuses on employee learning and development.

   - A new Learning Management System (LMS) that offers enhanced tools and flexibility – making administration and use simple and efficient.

   - New resources for trainers and administrators that will improve and align on-the-job training with the content that employees view online.

In the 1990s, as a series of ten VHS videocassettes, NATA transformed ground handling operations and safety training by providing the first standardized employee line service training program. In 2008, NATA took the next step and moved the NATA Safety 1st program online, blending interactive e-learning modules, exams, on-the-job training, and practical exams into one custom LMS. The new Safety 1st Training Center is the next evolution in learning and development for aviation business employees and provides companies the necessary tools and resources to grow their businesses by investing in their teams.

“For nearly eight decades, NATA has contributed significantly to the prosperity of aviation business and has been a catalyst for safety improvement, but we have not done this alone. As with the development of all of our programs and services, NATA relies on the guidance and expertise of its staff, industry stakeholders, and members in the field,” stated NATA President Gary Dempsey. “NATA Safety 1st is foremost a member-driven program, which means aviation businesses can be assured they are getting high-quality technical content and accepted best practices in a flexible, efficient, and cost-effective format that works for businesses, both small and large.”

In addition to the redesigned content and new LMS, the NATA Safety 1st Training Center shifts the focus from a “checking-the box” compliance mentality to one of true employee development. The updated platform will allow companies to focus training efforts on skills and tasks on an as-needed basis rather than requiring full completion of all content in a limited time frame. The new format utilizes “Ratings” that signify completion of required training for specific ground handling tasks, such as a Wing Walking Rating or Aircraft Marshalling Rating. As employees earn more ratings, they can achieve even higher “Certification Levels” that recognize their increased level of skill and knowledge, with the ultimate goal of achieving the Safety 1st Expert Certification Level. These changes were developed and tested by the NATA Safety Committee.

“This new approach to training takes what’s been at the core of the Safety 1st program to a higher level by enhancing training flexibility and comprehensiveness for organizations while providing trainees consistent feedback and motivation for achievement throughout their learning path,” added NATA’s Managing Director of Safety & Training Michael France.

Since its launch, NATA Safety 1st online has trained over 45,000 individuals and is currently used at over 1,600 locations globally.

The Safety 1st Training Center is available by annual subscription, allowing businesses to fix their annual training cost and reduce the impact of employee turnover. Visit for more information or contact us at to get started.

For general press inquiries, contact Shannon Chambers at 703-298-1347 or

The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has been the voice of aviation business for 80 years. Representing nearly 3,700 aviation businesses, NATA’s member companies provide a broad range of services to general aviation, the airlines and the military and NATA serves as the public policy group representing the interests of aviation businesses before Congress and the federal agencies.