“Having all our crisis plans always accessible and being able to handle an incident digitally through InCaseIT is a big step forward for us,” says Jens Eystein i Løðu who is Director of Crisis Management for Atlantic Airways in Faroe Islands. The company runs a complex operation that includes jets and helicopters, with destinations domestically as well as internationally.
Pre COVID-19, Atlantic Airways operated flights from the Faroe Islands to Denmark, Norway, Scotland, Iceland, Paris, Barcelona, Gran Canarias and Mallorca. No aircraft has been parked during the pandemic, but the airline has reduced international destinations from 12 to 2 as a result of the worldwide decline in traveling.
A crisis management platform
Since 2018, Atlantic Airways has used InCaseIT on a daily basis. It contains a variety of checklists and log functions, and i Løðu and his team also use the platform for developing media communication. “We have draft versions of press releases for various crisis scenarios that can be submitted and finalized through InCaseIT,” i Løðu says.
When asked what he finds to be its best feature, i Løðu points to the various options for notifying personnel about an emergency. “Through InCaseIT we can reach key people by voice, email, push notifications and text messages simultaneously, and we can also confirm – in real time – who has seen the message and who is able to report to work. That is a function that saves us time and that makes it possible for us to concentrate on handling the situation quickly,” i Løðu explains.
In addition to having access to a physical meeting room at the company’s headquarters at the airport, Atlantic Airways will handle potential crisis digitally through InCaseIT. i Løðu and his staff have therefore set up various teams in InCaseIT that include the following functions:
- Media handling
- Business continuity
- Special assistance
- Operational issues
“We have found that keeping track of what we do and which actions we take is vital, and we have therefore nominated a log keeper who is responsible for tracking activities in InCaseIT,” i Løðu describes.
Another important aspect of crisis management in the airline industry is to take care of victims, and Atlantic Airways has therefore trained a group of employees called “Special Assist Team” that in case of emergency are prepared for several tasks, including Call-Center, Family Care Center and Go-Teams to assist both crew, passengers and relatives.
“For each scenario, I find it especially valuable to know people who will be involved in the management and recovery phase, including airport personnel in other countries. In a crisis situation we need to work quickly, and knowing whom to call and having access to a few ‘back doors’ to reach them is vital,” i Løðu says.
He points out that InCaseIT provides updated documentation and contact lists to everyone handling the crisis, and that an essential job for a crisis manager is to make sure all lists are 100 percent relevant and up-to-date. “In my opinion, successful crisis management is based on preparedness,” i Løðu concludes. He offers the following concrete advice to others expected to handle a crisis:
- Keep checklists, records of contacts and organization charts always updated
- Find two deputies for each major position in your crisis organization
- Attend as many exercises as you can, and use findings to improve your own procedures
- Combine InCaseIT with other digital tools such as Google Map and Google Earth that can provide vital information and satellite images of an area of interest
Facts about Atlantic Airlines:
- National airline (“flag carrier”) of the Faroe Island
- 100% owned by the government
- Established 1987
- Operates one of the newest fleets in Europe with four Airbus aircraft and two Leonardo AW139 helicopters
- CEO: Johanna Bergi
- Read more www.atlanticairways.com