In the first quarter of this year, business aviation experienced fewer accidents, including those resulting in fatalities, than in the same period the previous year, but the overall number of deaths increased, according to statistics compiled by Boca Raton, Fla.-based industry safety analyst Robert E. Breiling Associates.
The overall numbers and those for the turboprop segment in particular were skewed by the March 22 crash of a Part 91 Pilatus PC-12 in Butte, Mont., which claimed the lives of all 14 people on board. Including this accident, the total of 18 fatalities among the turboprop category was double the number of deaths in the same period last year, during which there were three more accidents.
The business jet segment saw three nonfatal accidents in the first three months of this year, the same as in the first quarter of last year, but suffered no fatal crashes. During the same period last year there were five total accidents, two of which were fatal and resulted in seven deaths.
Part 135 business jet operations saw an increase in nonfatal accidents from one in the first three months of 2008 to two in the same period this year; the turboprop segment experienced no accidents in the same period this year compared with three, including one fatal, in the same period last year. Fractional operators experienced no accidents in the first quarter of either year.
Breiling’s recently completed 2008 Business Turbine Accident Review is now available. Ordering and pricing information can be obtained from www.breilinginc.com.