Following a steady reduction over almost twenty years, the helicopter accident and fatal accident rates have plateaued at 0.62-0.63 fatal accidents per 100,000 flights
While this is still around half the 1.2 rate in 2001, the FAA is ‘redoubling’ its efforts to keep reducing the number of rotary-wing accidents.
The US Helicopter Safety Team, an FAA-led initiative with the ultimate goal of eliminating helicopter fatalities, has analysed a number of the crashes and found some common threads in the data.
It has been working on ‘developing safety enhancements based on the accidents we have analysed,’ said the group in a news release, ‘many [of which] are now ready to be advanced’.
These include not flying at all and using drones for some hazardous operations, also a best practices list for preflight inspections and walkarounds.
It will also organise local meetings with operators in which accidents are discussed in detail.