AOPA Questions NTSB GA Focus

 - November 15, 2006, 6:36 AM

The NTSB is focusing its resources for general aviation accident investigation on four “broad GA safety issue areas,” Safety Board chairman Mark Rosenker said in a speech yesterday at the General Aviation Air Safety Investigators Advanced Technical Workshop in Wichita. The issue areas are, he said, “air tour helicopter operations, human factors in glass cockpits, the aging of GA aircraft structures and the quickly expanding industry of very light jets.” GA accident fatalities climbed slightly last year to 562 from 558 in 2004, but the four issue areas mentioned by Rosenker account for a fraction of GA accidents, according to AOPA Air Safety Foundation spokesman Chris Dancy. “Maneuvering flight remains the single biggest cause of GA accidents,” he said, “and VFR flight into instrument conditions is the single biggest cause of fatal GA accidents. None of the other [issue areas] are much of a factor yet.”