NTSA notes big drop in GA fatalities


(Note: I put this in “Aviation News” instead of GA on purpose, as it is pertinent to all aviation. - PAG)

NTSB notes big drop in GA fatalities

By AOPA ePublishing staff

The number of fatalities from general aviation accidents reached a 40-year low in 2007, according to statistics released by the NTSB on April 16. It also marked a 30-percent decrease from the previous year.

There were 491 fatalities last year compared with 703 in 2006, although the total number of GA accidents increased from 1,518 to 1,631 for the same time period.

Truncated. Full Article on AOPA Online.


I really am stunned. It seemed to me like there were crashes every week. I guess a crash doesn’t always mean a death and crashes did go up.


This got me thinking about perspective. It’s hard to get an exact number for 2007 but…

US Automobile deaths were north of 40,000
Motorcycles north of 4,500
US Soldiers killed in Iraq 901
Boating approx 700
General Aviation 491
US Police officers on duty 187
US Firefighters on duty 115
US Airlines 0 THAT’S ZERO!!!


Another stat to chew on from cnn.com/2008/TRAVEL/04/16/ai … index.html

From the above link

General aviation saw its accident fatalities plummet from 703 in 2006 to 491 in 2007.

But during 23.8 million hours of private flights in 2007, the number of accidents rose to 1,631 from 1,518 in 2006.

I just wonder where they get the hours for private flights.




Me too. I always wonder where these statistics some from.

As for the deaths, do we have an accident rate per capita. I mean, there are more automobile crashes and deaths but there are also more automobiles on the road.


Yeah, I’d like to see some figures on deaths and accidents comparing the passenger miles of autos and G.A. aircraft.



Total number of flight hours is an estimate as there are no real data. If you look at the various estimates of flight hours, there is a large variation between them, so take them with a big grain of salt. With the increase in fuel costs, it is hard to believe that flight hours of piston aircraft went up year over year, but I’ve seen data that timeshare, charters, etc. have increased.

Many people have attempted to estimate the accident rate for GA vs. cars, but the analysis is handicapped by not having any reliable estimates of total flight hours. The majority of reports I have read conclude that piston GA airplane fatality rates per hour are higher than automobiles.

Editorial comment: the zero commercial fatality rate demonstrates well that the recent FAA witch hunt that grounded several major airlines was more oriented to show Congress that the FAA was not the lap dog of commercial airlines than it was to improve flying safety.