The National Transportation Safety Board released preliminary aviation accident statistics last week, which show an overall decline in the number of US registered civil aviation accidents. The number of civil aviation accidents fell from 1,539 in 2012 to 1,297 in 2013.
Although there has been a decrease in accidents involving scheduled Part 121 operations (commercial air transport), the first fatal accident in three years occurred. On August 14, 2013, UPS Airlines flight 1354, an Airbus A300-600, crashed on approach to Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport in Birmingham, Alabama, resulting in two fatalities of the flight crew.
It should be noted that although the crash of Asiana Airlines flight 214 occurred in the United States, it is not reported in the NTSB statistics because it is a foreign registered carrier operating under Part 129 operations.
The number of accidents involving scheduled Part 135 operations (commuter) increased from four in 2012 to eight in 2013 with three fatal accidents.
On-demand Part 135 operations, which include charter, air taxi, air tour, and air medical flights, showed increases in all categories in 2013. The number of total accidents (44), fatal accidents (10), and fatalities (27) all increased, and the accident rate per 100,000 flight hours increased to 1.24 from 0.99 in 2012.
With regard to general aviation accidents, there has been a decrease in all measures. The total number of general aviation accidents decreased by 249 in 2013, bringing the number to 1,222. The number of fatal accidents (221), fatalities (387) and the accident rate per 100,000 flight hours (5.85) also declined from the previous year.
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