Airplanes Operating Private and Charter Flights worldwide substantial increase in accidents in 2011

Airplanes Operating Private and Charter Flights worldwide substantial increase in accidents in 2011.

While a small amount of operations continued to be one of the safest segments. According to AIN, total accidents involving U.S.-registered business jets nearly doubled, from 17 in 2010 to 32 in 2011.  U.S.-registered turboprop accidents jumped from 32 in 2010 to 43 in 2011.

This increase in the number of accidents coincides with an increase in the number of business jet flight operations worldwide.  Statistics compiled by the FAA, flight operations including arrivals and departures, increased by approximately 4 percent between December 2010 and November 2011 over the same time period just a year earlier.

Turboprops Are By Far the Worst in Fatalities

The number of fatalities in turboprop accidents more than doubled in 2011 from where 29 people were killed in 11 accidents last year compared to 12 people killed in four accidents in 2010. By the fourth quarter of 2011 alone, 13 people died in four fatal accidents involving a private or corporate-owned turboprop, while there were no fatal turboprop accidents in the final quarter of 2010. In 2011, two people were killed in two fatal accidents of turboprops, whereas two people were killed in turboprop crashes in 2010. In 2011, two of the fatal turboprop accidents involved airplanes operating outside the U.S.

Because the FAA and NTSB draw fine distinctions between “incidents” as well as “accidents”, these agencies are inconsistent and hopefully the status of the occurrence may change.

An example of these inconsistencies would be runway overruns, retracted landing gear, and gear-collapse mishaps, which are typically listed as incidents by the FAA and not calculated by the NTSB. However, when an occurrence causes substantial damage or serious injury, the NTSB would record it as an accident.

In other incidents, if they don’t result in serious damage or injury, these are usually listed just as incidents. These incidents can include precautionary engine shutdowns, flameouts, bird or other animal strikes, blown tires, window separations, doors opening, lightning strikes, system malfunctions, parts departing an airplane, loss of control, and turbulence. Additionally, depending on what is found during the investigation, events initially classified as incidents are sometimes dropped from safety databases, if investigators consider them inconsequential. Some mishaps which were preliminarily listed officially as incidents, have been changed to accidents because of the seriousness of their nature.

For more information: