Business aviation accidents down, fatalities up

For the first quarter of 2009, business aviation accidents – including those that were fatal – declined, but the number of deaths increased, according to statistics compiled by Robert E. Breiling Associates.

The over-all numbers, and those of the turboprop segment in particular, were skewed by the March 22 crash of a Part 91-operated Pilatus PC-12 in Butte, Mont., which resulted in 14 deaths.

The total of 18 fatalities in the turboprop category was double the number of deaths in the same period last year, Breiling Associates reported, although three fewer accidents were recorded in that segment.

Business jets logged three non-fatal accidents in the first three months, as they did in the first quarter of last year, but there were no fatal crashes this year while two fatal accidents resulting in seven deaths were recorded last year.

Fractional operators demonstrated exemplary safety records, with no accidents in the first quarter of either year, the report stated.

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