Decreasing number of hull loss accidents
Hull losses are events in which an aircraft is destroyed or damaged beyond economical repair. Most fatal accidents also result in a hull loss. However in the majority of hull losses, there are no fatalities.
The overall trend in hull losses is similar to the trend in fatal accidents. The total number of hull losses is stable even though there is a significant increase in the number of flight cycles.
Yearly number of hull loss accidents
Rates of hull losses are decreasing over time
The rate of hull losses has decreased significantly over time, and is generally continuing downwards. However after a historically low hull loss rate of 0.17 in 2017, the rate of hull losses has increased to 0.49 in 2018. This underscores the message that we must not allow a year with few accidents to make us complacent, and we cannot afford to take the level of safety achieved in our industry as a given.
Yearly hull loss rate per million flights
Fourth generation aircraft have the lowest hull loss rate
The huge reduction in hull loss rate in aviation has been achieved by a long and ongoing commitment by our industry. Aircraft systems technology in particular has been conscientiously evolved with safety in mind. Since the late 1950’s, jet aircraft technologies have evolved through four different generations.
Comparison of hull loss rates by generation of aircraft provides a clear illustration of the value of our industry’s investments in technology for Safety. Fourth generation jets have the lowest hull loss rate of all. In 2018, fourth generation aircraft had a rate of 0.16 hull losses per million flight cycles. This was more than one third of the hull loss rate for third generation jets.
10 year moving average hull-loss rate by aircraft generation