Monday, September 29, 2014

Accidents at record low for private planes

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Talk to almost any pilot and they’ll tell you the same thing: private planes are incredibly safe.

Data from the Air Safety Institute shows a downward trend for accidents involving private planes to 948 accidents in 2013. That’s the lowest level in decades, according to the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA).

News 4 aviation analyst Bob Miller says mid-air collisions are even rarer.

“It doesn’t happen very often. The data nationally says there’s less than 10 of these nationally a year. It’s a very rare form of accident. General aviation is extremely safe,” he said.

Last year, 238 people died in private plane crashes. That’s also down from previous years.

George Perry, Senior Vice President for AOPA, said, “What’s important to keep in mind here is that each year there are about 1.7 million general aviation flights. General aviation accidents have declined significantly since the 1970s and 80s. In fact, they’re down about 75 percent, and just this past year general aviation set a new record for safety. Very low accident numbers and very low fatalities.”

He says pilots take safety more seriously than in the past, and the internet has helped to improve information sharing and training for private plane pilots.

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