Some very useful safety statistics about GA

general aviation accident safety statistics aopa
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General Aviation Safety Statistics

AOPA’s GA Accident Scorecard & Nall Report

Low Accident Rate Maintained as GA Activity Grows
Air Safety Institute Releases 26th 'Nall Report,' Partners with Type Club

AOPA annually issues a comprehensive report of the safety record of General Aviation. This analysis benefits from its collection of data for 18 years. In this age which has relied heavily on numbers to focus actions to reduce risks associated with flying, this is an incredibly valuable resource. In contrast to two Senators who have fixated on small numbers, these macro trends provide useful insights into what GA should prioritize to improve its record.

general aviation accident rates aopa

A detailed scorecard of every safety indicia is a very useful tool from which every participant in GA should learn. Here is the index to the information provided:

General Aviation Accidents Summary……………………………………………     1
General Aviation Accidents, 2007-2016…………………………………………     2
General Aviation Accident Rates, 2007-2015………………………………….    4
Summary of General Aviation Accidents by Year ……………………………    6
2015 Accident Conditions: Non-Commercial Fixed-Wing………………..    7
2016 Accident Conditions: Non-Commercial Fixed-Wing………………..    9
2015 Accident Conditions: Non-Commercial Helicopter………………….   11
2016 Accident Conditions: Non-Commercial Helicopter………………….   13
2015 Accident Conditions: Commercial Fixed-Wing ……………………….   15
2016 Accident Conditions: Commercial Fixed-Wing ……………………….   17
2015 Accident Conditions: Commercial Helicopter …………………………   19
2016 Accident Conditions: Commercial Helicopter …………………………   22

Here are some of the major points of the 26th Joseph T. Nall Report:

  • The measure of GA accidents against the number of hours flown remained at its record low for a second consecutive year in 2014, a year that saw overall GA flight activity pick up slightly after a long decline.
  • The 952 noncommercial fixed-wing aircraft accidents in 2014 amounted to a reduction of nine accidents from 2013, and resulted in an essentially unchanged accident rate of 5.78 per 100,000 hours.
  • Increased activity in the commercial fixed-wing and noncommercial helicopter segments more than offset decreased activity in the commercial helicopter and noncommercial fixed-wing segments to produce an aggregate 1.7-percent increase in flight hours, from 22.7 million hours in 2013 to 23.1 million hours in 2014, according to the report.
  • The year’s 229 fatal accidents caused 354 individual fatalities, a three-percent decline from 2013. The incidence of fatal accidents, however, increased by 11 percent, the report said.
  • Fatalities in accidents on noncommercial fixed-wing flights rose by 15, or five percent. The 11 fatalities on fixed-wing commercial flights marked a decline of 39 percent, year to year.
  • Noncommercial fixed-wing flights made up 75 percent of estimated GA activity in 2014, up two percent from 2013; however, those flights accounted for 82 percent of all accidents, up from 81 percent in 2013. They also were responsible for 86 percent of fatal accidents, also up from 81 percent the previous year.
  • Overall, the results indicate that the significant improvements and historically low accident rates registered in 2013 “proved not to be a one-time statistical anomaly,” wrote AOPA Air Safety Institute Executive Director Richard McSpadden in his Publisher’s View in the Nall Report. “Across the general aviation community, we can take pride that our collaborative efforts appear to be having a positive, sustained impact.”
  • Accident causes tend not to vary significantly from year to year, a trend the new report confirmed, noting that pilot-related mishaps continue to account for about 75 percent of all accidents—20 percent of which were fatal.
  • McSpadden also acknowledged “that there is more work to do and further improvements are well within our capability. Troubling and stubborn accident categories remain. The wide discrepancy between pilot-related and other types of accident causes and the notable differences in accident rates between commercial and personal flying illustrate that further improvements in general aviation safety are needed and achievable.
  • “The overwhelming majority of these accidents are avoidable, so if we can convince more pilots to access safety information, we can drive the accident rate even lower, and save lives,” he said. “That is why numerous industry leaders and type club presidents are joining the Air Safety Institute in a push to reach more private pilots with safety information in a program we call ‘Find one, bring one,’ which encourages pilots to find a pilot not accessing safety information and bring them to safety.”
  • In 2016, there was a three-percent increase in accidents, but fatal accidents declined from 20 percent of the total to 16 percent. For the fourth straight year, 2016 had fewer than 1,000 noncommercial fixed-wing accidents, of which fewer than 200 were fatal, “levels not previously seen in the post-World War II era. There were 156 in 2016, 6 percent below the previous record low of 167 recorded three years earlier,” it said.

joseph t nall report aopa

 


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