Aviation Safety Network Publishes 2018 Accident Statistics

Last year’s date shows 2018 was worse for the airlines than the five-year average.

ntsb investigation
Loss of control is still the biggest killer in aviation.NTSB

Ahead of next month's release by the NTSB of its Most Wanted List of safety priorities, the Aviation Safety Network published its 2018 statistics that showed 15 fatal airliner accidents, that resulted in 556 fatalities. "Despite several high-profile accidents, 2018 was one of the safest years ever for commercial aviation." ASN said last year was worse than the five-year average however. The safest year in aviation history was 2017 with 10 accidents and 44 lives lost. ASN is an exclusive independent service of the Flight Safety Foundation based in the Netherlands.

Twelve 2017 accidents involved passenger flights while three were cargo flights. Three out of 15 aircraft were operated by airlines on the E.U. “blacklist”, up by two when compared to 2017. ASN said, “the airline accident rate is one fatal accident for every 2.52 million flights,” not including any military accidents.

Aviation Safety Network’s CEO Harro Ranter spoke to the enormous increase in airline safety over the past two decades. “If the accident rate had remained the same as ten years ago, there would have been 39 fatal accidents last year. At the accident rate of the year 2000, there would have been even 64 fatal accidents.”

One thing is clear however, "Loss of control accidents are a major safety concern, responsible for at least ten of the 25 worst accidents, most of which were not survivable." Loss of control remains a major concern of the general aviation community as well and is expected to once again appear on the NTSB's Most Wanted List for 2019.