Planning a Winning Safety Case- ISO 26262 relevant

Chad Kymal
Chad Kymal is the CTO and founder of Omnex Inc., an international consulting and training organization headquartered in the United States. After graduating from the General Motors Institute, Chad spent a number of years working at General Motors and KPMG before founding Omnex Inc. in 1986. Over the course of Chad’s successful career, he has served on the Malcolm Baldrige Board of Examiners and more


One of the key requirements of ISO 26262 for new products is a Safety Case. They are similar in many ways with PPAP documents in that they show the evidence that ISO 26262 has been conformed to successfully. Additionally, ISO 26262 Conformation Measures and Functional Safety Assessments review Safety Cases. Furthermore, the Distributed Interface Agreement or DIA established between a customer and a supplier can include a Safety Case Review based on ASIL levels. In short, Safety Cases are an important output of the ISO 26262 application, especially since the product cannot be released without an acceptable and conforming Safety Case. Part 2 which is the normative (or auditable) is the only part of the ISO 26262 that provides specific requirements for a Safety Case. In fact, it says “Safety Case is a comprehensive collection of work products generated as an item progresses in the safety life cycle.” Clear enough? Okay, so the project could simply collect all the work products of the Safety Life Cycle and the documents would constitute the safety case, right? Well, if this is all that is done, then we are most probably going to fail. What, then, constitutes a winning safety case? When do we start a Safety Case? Is this like a PPAP, can we think about it at the end of the development? What should we do in the start, middle, and end to have a Winning Safety Case?

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