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General Aviation Accidents Still Declining According to 2015 NTSB Stats

General aviation aircraft at a small airport - General Aviation Accidents Still Declining According to 2015 NTSB Stats
General aviation aircraft at a small airport

The Rate and Number General Aviation Accidents Shows a Steady Decline Over the Last 20 Years.

The NTSB has released 2015 aviation accident statistics for aircraft involved in Part 121 and Part 135 operations as well as general aviation aircraft. And, according to the statistics, both the rate of general aviation accidents and fatal accidents have continued to decline, despite an increase in the total flight hours versus the past two years.

In other welcome news, the NTSB stats also show that as with 2014, there were also no US airline related fatalities in 2015.

Further Details on the 2015 Statistics for General Aviation Accidents

According to the stats, 2015 saw 1,209 total general aviation accidents, including 229 fatal accidents, spread over 20,576,000 total flight hours. (The report indicates that the total number of estimated flight hours was provided by the FAA.)

Those numbers represent a steady decline over the twenty year period detailed by the NTSB in their released stats. By comparison, 1996 saw 1,908 total general aviation accidents, with 361 fatal accidents. When compared in terms of accidents per 100,000 flight hours, 2015 had an overall rate of 5.85 accidents per 100,000 hours versus 7.65 per 100,000 hours in 1996, and a fatal accident rate of 1.09 per 100,000 flight hours rate in 2015 versus 1.45 per 100,000 hours in 1996.

NTSB Chairman Christopher A. Hart said that “Even though the fatality rate in 2015 was the lowest it has been in many years, 376 people still lost their lives, which is why improving general aviation safety is on the NTSB’s Most Wanted List of transportation safety improvements. While lower, these numbers are still too high.

The NTSB did note that the accident rate for “non-scheduled air carrier flights, or on-demand Part 135 operations (charter, air taxi, air tour, and air medical operations), was up, but only slightly.

Cessna 150 taking off from airport - AOPA Nall Report Reveals General Aviation Safety Milestone

AOPA Nall Report Reveals General Aviation Safety Milestone

For those who are interested in learning more, the NTSB’s 2015 statistical tables, which show total accident numbers and accident rates for all major segments of US civil aviation, are available for viewing and download on their website.

Anders Clark was introduced to aviation a few short years ago, and has developed an interest in aviation history and what the future of aviation will bring. A writer and editor, Anders enjoys researching and sharing the stories of aviation.