Case Study: Dublin Airport

Dublin Airport ‘ups’ its compliance adherence and safety culture through training.


Dublin Airport is an international airport that serves the capital of Ireland – Dublin. Currently over 30 million passengers pass through the airport annually. In 2018 it was listed as the 13th busiest airport in Europe and is currently Ireland’s busiest airport in terms of passenger numbers.

The Challenge

Dublin Airport is a European Aviation Safety Authority EASA certified aerodrome. As part of the Commission Regulation (EU) No 139/2014, the ADR.OR.D.017 training and proficiency check programme states that “the aerodrome operator shall establish and implement a training program for personnel involved in the operation, maintenance and management of the aerodrome”.

As an acceptable means of compliance, airports that are EASA certified should implement training programs that include Safety Management System (SMS) training at a level appropriate to the individual’s responsibility and involvement in SMS. Moreover, the regulations require the program to include human and organizational factors safety training.

Dublin Airport’s Apron Safety Awareness training syllabus is currently linked to the airport identification card – training has to be completed prior to gaining a permit for airside access. While this syllabus contains training on Human Factors Safety and SMS it was decided that additional training would be undertaken by personnel holding positions that require a higher level and involvement in SMS.

The airport also felt that the additional training would also improve their safety culture and strengthen their compliance adherence. 

The Solution 

Dublin Airport made the decision to roll-out online training to approximately 120 personnel through the ACI Online Learning Centre (OLC).  All senior and middle management and business support levels, as well as some key airside delivery roles, were enrolled in the Human Factors Safety Training and the Safety Management Systems Training courses. 

Each learner was required to complete the training as part of their Occupational Health and Safety and Aviation Safety Training.

 The Benefits

Training through the OLC lifted the level of safety culture at the airport and further enhanced the airport’s EASA compliance in relation to training and proficiency checks. 

Damian O’Neill, the Operations Training Manager at Dublin Airport, commented that the training was aligned to EASA’s training and proficiency checks. He particularly appreciated the ease of access to the training – the training was ‘off-the-shelf’ and could be implemented with ease. 

He went on to say that the OLC enrolments team made the training procurement and enrolments process quick and easy. The Learning Management System’s (LMS’s) reporting functionality made the tracking of the learners’ progress and completion rate straightforward and efficient.


The OLC would like to thank Damion O’Neill and Dublin Airport for taking the time to assist us in developing this article.