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Fatal amateur-built aircraft accidents remained under the historic average over the 12-month period ending in September 2022, but the Experimental Aircraft Association notes that an uptick over the previous year’s total shows that focused efforts to enhance safety even further remain essential.
For the federal fiscal year ending September 30, 2022, the Federal Aviation Administration reported there were 56 fatal accidents in experimental category aircraft over the preceding 12 months, including 39 in amateur-built aircraft. That compares to 42 total accidents – 33 in amateur-built aircraft – during the 12-month period between October 2020 and September 2021.
“The fatal accident totals, for both amateur-builts and experimental aircraft overall, remain 30 to 35 percent below where they were just a decade ago, including when looking at the three-year rolling average on which the FAA bases its annual not-to-exceed number,” said Sean Elliott, EAA’s vice president of advocacy and safety. “While that’s good news, we never want to see an annual increase in the totals. That’s a reminder that we all must continue to work to make safety the top priority even with the small numbers we see each year.”
The higher accident totals in experimental category aircraft mirror an increase for all of general aviation over the same 12-month period. This also coincides with preliminary figures that show an increase in flight hours in 2021 and into 2022.