The first quarter of this year continued the downward trend in fatalities from turbine business aircraft accidents. According to safety analyst Robert E. Breiling Associates
of Boca Raton, Fla., there was one fatal accident involving a business jet in the first quarter, the same as the tally during the first three months last year, but four people were killed compared with eight last year. However, the first quarter also recorded one nonfatal accident involving a fractional jet and a fatal accident of a Cessna-owned Caravan, versus no mishaps in either of these categories (fractional and manufacturer, respectively) in the comparable period last year.
The number of accidents and fatalities involving business turboprops also decreased in the first quarter. Breiling’s figures show nine people were killed in three turboprop accidents during this year’s first quarter versus 16 people killed in four fatal accidents during last year’s first quarter. There were no fatal accidents in either first quarter involving turboprops flown by salaried crews under Part 91 operations, but, as mentioned, there was one crash of a Part 91 business jet flown by a salaried crew in the first quarter of this year. All four aboard a Goship Air Citation 560 were killed when the twinjet crashed while trying to land at McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad, Calif., on January 24.