Aircraft Accident Rate Drops In 2009
Friday 19, February 2010
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced the aviation safety performance for 2009 showing that the year’s accident rate for Western-built jet aircraft as the second lowest in aviation history.
The 2009 global accident rate (measured in hull losses per million flights of Western-built jet aircraft) was 0.71. That is equal to one accident for every 1.4 million flights. This is a significant improvement of the 0.81 rate recorded in 2008 (one accident for 1.2 million flights). The 2009 rate was the second lowest in aviation history, just above the 2006 rate of 0.65. Compared to 10 years ago, the accident rate has been cut 36% from the rate recorded in 2000.
In absolute numbers, 2009 saw the following results:
“Safety is the industry’s number one priority. Even in a decade during which airlines lost an average of US$5 billion per year, we still managed to improve our safety record. Last year, 2.3 billion people flew safely. But every fatality is a human tragedy that reminds us of the ultimate goal of zero accidents and zero fatalities,” said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s Director General and CEO.
IATA member airlines outperformed the industry average with a Western-built jet hull accident rate of 0.62. That rate is equal to one accident for every 1.6 million flights. “In 2009 IATA marked an important milestone in aviation safety. From April 1, all IATA members were on the registry of the IATA Operational Safety Audit - a testimony to our commitment to the highest global standards for operational safety. IOSA is the global standard. Today 332 carriers are on the registry, including IATA’s 231 members,” said Bisignani.
There are significant regional differences in the accident rate:
An analysis of the causes of the 2009 accidents focuses on three main areas:
These initiatives are consistent with IATA’s comprehensive Six-point Safety Program which focuses on infrastructure safety, safety data management and analysis, operations, Safety Management Systems, maintenance and auditing.
“Safety is a constant challenge. Having made aviation the safest way to travel, further improvements will come only with careful data analysis. We must understand the underlying safety risk trends, not just from the handful of accidents each year, but by bringing together and analyzing data from millions of safe flights. The IATA Global Safety Information Center was launched in December 2009 for just that purpose. Going forward our goal is to work with other organizations and governments involved in aviation safety to add to the database and drive even more improvements,” Said Bisignani.
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