In Flight Test Safety Fact, 19-10, Flight Test Safety Committee Chairman Tom Huff addressed the need for a common taxonomy for risk. I mention this, because I came across an article by Vahana Aero addressing the risks of autonomy in air transportation that included the matrix pictured, which illustrates Huff’s point.
First, “risk” is not “the chance of encountering a hazard.” Second, I do not believe that the risk for urban aircraft is low. Finally, I do not think that hazards are rarely encountered. If we started a similar review of the “impact” column, I think we would find similar inconsistencies.
Understanding risk matters. How we talk about risk matters. I’ve said it before: your words matter.