The following audit report has been posted to the NASA Office of Inspector
General web site: Space Shuttle Program Management Safety Observations
(IG-01-017, March 23, 2001)

To access the entire report, please go to:

Synopsis: The NASA Office of Inspector General (OIG) has completed an audit
of the United Space Alliance’s (USA’s) safety procedures under NASA’s Space
Flight Operations Contract (SFOC). As part of the audit, we reviewed the
oversight of USA’s safety procedures for the Space Shuttle Program at the
Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (Johnson). We found that the Johnson Safety,
Reliability, and Quality Assurance Office (Johnson Safety Office) was not
providing the required support to the Manager, Space Shuttle Program Safety
and Mission Assurance (Space Shuttle Program Safety Manager), for oversight
of USA’s safety activities. We also found that NASA’s contractor
surveillance plans did not address all SFOC requirements for safety; USA did
not update its Management Plan to reflect organizational and personnel
changes to the SFOC, including changes in key safety personnel from NASA and
USA; and USA’s reporting to NASA of close calls and mishaps needed
improvement. As a result, NASA can improve management controls to ensure (1)
effective oversight of USA’s safety operations under the SFOC, (2) better
control over $13 million in annual Space Shuttle Program funds provided to
the Johnson Safety Office, and (3) that adequate corrective actions are taken
on all safety mishaps and close calls.

Management Response: While management did not agree with all of the
findings, Johnson concurred with the recommendations and has planned or taken
responsive corrective actions. Johnson will establish procedures to clarify
the responsibilities of the Johnson Safety Office to ensure that it provides
the necessary support to the Space Shuttle Program Safety Manager. Johnson
also plans to update the various SFOC surveillance plans to adequately
address safety, revise the SFOC Management Plan to reflect current
operations, and ensure that the Agency’s automated mishap tracking system
accurately reflects current USA mishap and close call information.

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