Aviation Mishaps Increase After Record Safe Year

Fiscal 2014 was the safest ever for Air Force manned aviation, but the total number of Class A aviation mishaps increased in Fiscal 2015, bringing the number more in line with historical norms. In Fiscal 2015 there were a total of 35 Class A aviation mishaps (categorized as flight, flight related, aircraft ground operations, and remotely piloted aircraft) and seven aircraft were destroyed, compared to 24 total Class A aviation mishaps and two aircraft destroyed in Fiscal 2014, Air Force Safety Center spokesman Keith Wright told Air Force Magazine. A Class A mishap is any accident in which someone? is killed or permanently disabled or there is at least $2 million in damage. There were 19 Class A aviation flight mishaps—“nearly identical” to the 10-year average of 18.5—and 16 Class A RPA mishaps in Fiscal 2015, compared to just seven aviation flight mishaps and 12 RPA mishaps in Fiscal 2014. The number of deaths resulting from an aviation mishap decreased, dropping from 10 in Fiscal 2014 to six in Fiscal 2015. However, the number of on-duty ground fatalities increased, rising from one in Fiscal 2014 to four in Fiscal 2015. Off-duty ground fatalities also increased from 42 in Fiscal 2014 to 47 in Fiscal 2015, according to an Air Force release. “A change in mishaps from one year to the next doesn’t mean we got it right one year and relaxed the next,” said Maj. Gen. Andrew Mueller, USAF’s chief of safety, in a release. “It’s important to look at trending data and see the larger picture rather than focus only on changes from one year to the next.”