Safety Statistics and Recommendations

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NTSB Recommendations Likely to Impact FAA Runway Safety Margin Discussions
October 4, 2007
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) held a hearing to discuss its findings regarding the December 2005 accident of a Southwest Airlines’ Boeing 737 that ran off the departure end of runway 31 center (31C) at Chicago’s Midway Airport. The Board’s recommendations may feasibly impact the FAA’s Landing Distance Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) discussions and recommendations on takeoff and landing distance calculations; specifically, the assumptions and margins required to be included in the calculations. View additional information on the NBAA web site at

NBAA Responds to Report Mischaracterizing Business Aviation Safety
April 16, 2007
NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen last week responded to a series of news articles focusing on a report that mischaracterized business aviation safety by inappropriately grouping it with a variety of other flying craft, including hot-air balloons and gliders, and planes that fly very rigorous missions, including emergency medical services and firefighting. "Those flights are not typically considered a means of routine, reliable transport," Bolen's letter states. "Business aviation has for years had a comparable safety record to that held by the commercial airlines. Flights aboard business aviation aircraft are safe, and it's unfortunate your readers were led to believe otherwise. Review Bolen's letter in its entirety.

NTSB Issues Final Report in Lidle NYC Plane Crash
May 1, 2007
Today, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) finalized its report on the October 2006 airplane accident in New York City that killed Yankee Pitcher Cory Lidle. The Board found that the probable cause of the accident was "the pilots' inadequate planning, judgment, and airmanship in the performance of a 180-degree turn maneuver inside of a limited turning space." As part of its report, the NTSB issued a recommendation to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) that would "permanently prohibit visual flight rules flight operations involving fixed-wing, nonamphibious
aircraft in the New York East River Class B exclusion area unless those operations are authorized and being controlled by air traffic control." NBAA agrees with the Board's findings regarding the probable cause of the accident. The Association makes a number of resources available to promote safe flight at

NTSB Issues Final Report on 2004 Accident in Houston
November 20, 2006
The NTSB has issued its final report on the November 2004 Gulfstream accident at Houston Hobby Airport (HOU). The flight was scheduled to transport former president George H.W. Bush and others to Ecuador. The NTSB found that the probable cause of this accident was the flightcrew’s failure to adequately monitor and cross-check the flight instruments during the approach. Contributing to the accident was the flightcrew’s failure to select the instrument landing system frequency in a timely manner and to adhere to approved company approach procedures, including the stabilized approach criteria. Download a copy of the report (578KB, PDF)

NTSB Issues Safety Recommendation Regarding Anti-Ice Operations
August 28, 2006
On August 25, 2006, the NTSB recommended that the FAA take action to address safety issues identified in the Safety Board's investigations of several high-altitude, dual-engine flameouts that have occurred on Raytheon Beechjet 400 series airplanes powered by Pratt & Whitney Canada JT15D-5 turbofan engines. NTSB Safety Recommendation A-06-56-59 advises the FAA to issue requirements for pilots and flight manuals of Raytheon's Beechjet 400 and other JT15D-5-powered aircraft. It also recommends that the FAA "work with engine and airplane manufacturers and other industry personnel as well as the appropriate international airworthiness authorities to actively pursue research to develop an ice detector that would alert pilots to internal engine icing and require that it be installed on new production turbojet engines, as well as retrofitted to existing turbojet engines." For full details, download NTSB Safety Recommendation A-06-56-59.

NBAA Responds to Forbes Article on Charter Safety
April 27, 2005
A recent article ("Flight of Fear," May 9), in Forbes magazine overlooked the strong safety standards, stringent levels of federal oversight, and outstanding operational history for charter aviation companies and their pilots. The fact is, the continuing emphasis on safety is the very reason that thousands of charter operators fly millions of hours each year without incident. More.

NTSB Issues Wing Upper Surface Ice Accumulation Alert
December 29, 2004
On December 29, 2004, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued an alert to pilots regarding wing upper surface ice accumulation: "Ice accumulation on the wing upper surface is very difficult to detect. It may not be seen from the cabin because it is clear/white and it is very difficult to see from the front or back of the wing. The Safety Board believes strongly that the only way to ensure that the wing is free from critical contamination is to touch it." The advisory also cites a previous NTSB report: "According to wind tunnel data, a wing upper surface roughness caused by particles of only 1–2 mm diameter (the size of a grain of table salt), at a density of about one particle per square centimeter, can cause lift losses of about 22 and 33 percent, in ground effect and free air, respectively." View the complete NTSB Advisory

Business Aviation's Excellent Safety Record Detailed
November 30, 2004
Three recent high profile aviation accidents have resulted in dramatically increased media attention on the safety of business aviation. NBAA has responded aggressively to the media regarding business aviation safety and these efforts have prevented a number of misleading and/or inaccurate stories. Unfortunately, one national news organization, ABC News, ran a story on November 29 which stated that the fatal accident rate of “corporate aviation is 2.5 times greater than the major airlines.” ABC added that “the fatal accident rate for charters…is more than 50 times higher than that of the commercial airlines.” The basis for ABC’s statements are statistics developed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) which we believe inappropriately include a broad spectrum of general aviation aircraft in their calculation – including piston-powered airplanes, turboprops, business jets, helicopters, balloons, dirigibles and gliders. The result of this overly broad categorization of aircraft is that it misrepresents the accident performance of specific components within those broad categories. More.

Additional Resources

FAA Office of Accident Investigation (AAI)
Provides preliminary accident and incident reports during the last 10 business days.

NTSB Aviation Accident Database
Search for aviation accidents and selected incidents within the United States from 1962 and later.

FAA Aviation Safety Information Analysis and Sharing (ASIAS) System
Allows operators to search through numerous government databases and aviation safety studies.