• Hull Losses

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 hull loss rate has decreased significantly over time, and is generally continuing downwards. After one of the lowest rates in 2017, the rate increased in 2018. The rate for 2019 decreased again to 0.28 hull losses per million flights.

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

 
Yearly hull loss rate per million flights

Fourth generation aircraft have the lowest hull loss rate

The huge reduction in the hull loss rate in aviation has been achieved by a long and ongoing commitment by our industry. Aircraft systems technology in particular has constantly evolved with safety in mind. Since the late 1950s, 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 2019, fourth generation aircraft had a rate of 0.16 hull losses per million flight cycles. This rate is more than two thirds lower than the previous third generation jets.

10 year moving average hull loss rate (per million flights) per aircraft generation

 
10 year moving average hull loss rate (per million flights) per aircraft generation