Business Jet Accidents

Business jet aircraft accidents on the increase

Business jet accidents increase during 2012

2012 has not been a kind year when it come to business jet accidents. Aviation safety experts Robert E. Breiling Associates, Inc. reports that worldwide business jet accidents declined in 2012 while U.S. business jet accidents increased during the same period.

To add to the misery there were 21 deaths in U.S. business jet accidents while in 2011 there were no fatalities in business jet accidents. It is interesting to note that the number of business jet incidents declined in 2012 from 2011 the number of business jet accidents increased in 2012.

Traffic Levels Remain Stagnant

It is interesting to note that the number of hours flown by business jet aircraft remained flat from 2011 levels. Stranger yet was the fact that owner flown and personal use of turboprop aircraft accidents declined from 22 in 2011 to 11 in 2012. Business turboprop accidents were also cut in half from 2011 levels as well.

The first question that pops into my mind is training. Is it possible that wealthy individuals who operate their own turboprop aircraft are willing to spend money on recurrent training while business jet aircraft owners who use them for their cash strapped businesses are skimping on recurrent training?

Landing Accidents Most Prevalent

“Landing continues to be the primary phase where accidents are happening,” says Breiling Associates’ Robert Breiling. Runway overshoots remain a problem for business jets, he says, adding that it is “particularly high” in smaller jets. He says a number of land fast and touch down long. While smaller jets typically can operate on shorter runways, the overwhelming majority of runway overshoots – 78% – are occurring on runways that are 5,000 ft. or longer.

Landing related accidents and incidents resulting in business jet accidents rose 58% while the average percentage of landing related accidents and incidents over the past five years was between 40 and 45% of total business jet accidents.

Are Less Experienced Pilots To Blame?

Robert Breiling of Robert E. Breiling Associates, Inc. posits that one reason that may account for these runway overshoots could be that less experienced pilots are flying single pilot jets. He says “If something goes wrong, you really have your hands full.”

However, Breiling noted that business jet landing accidents were as common with two crew aircraft as with single pilot flown aircraft.

Business Jet Accident Video

In November 2012 a Cessna Citation jet landing at the Congonhas Airport in Sao Paulo, Brazil overran the end of the runway and the accident was caught in this dramatic video. Only one person was injured.

Turbine Helicopter Accidents

U.S. twin-turbine helicopter accidents increased from 6 in 2011 to 16 in 2012 while single-turbine helicopter accidents rose from 50 in 2011 to 57 in 2012.

Learn more about human error as it applies to business jet accidents in this interesting book Naked Pilot: The Human Factor in Aircraft Accidents.

In the meantime keep your wings straight and level Hersch!

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Until next time keep your wings straight and level Hersch!

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