No fatal commercial airline accidents involving operators from member states of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) were reported in 2018, despite a surge in fatal commercial airline accidents worldwide, EASA says.
In its Preliminary Safety Overview 2018, released Tuesday, EASA said that one fatal accident in 2018 involved a European commercial airplane operator — the Aug. 4 crash of a Junkers JU-52 sightseeing flight in the Swiss Alps, which killed 20. Although the airplane, which was built in 1939, was being flown on a commercial flight, “it was a unique event, compared with traditional airline operations,” EASA said.
Noting that the JU-52 crash — and the 10 other fatal accidents worldwide with 530 total fatalities — occurred in the year following what was considered the safest in commercial aviation history, EASA said, “The key message … is that we should never be complacent with safety and remain persistent in our efforts devoted to protecting passengers and citizens.”
An analysis of accidents and serious incidents in the five years from 2014 through 2018 showed that the three most common key risk areas, also called potential accident outcomes, were aircraft upset, runway excursions and “technical faults relating to aircraft pressurisation or fire,” EASA said. Those areas are singled out in the strategic safety priorities identified in the European Plan for Aviation Safety, which identifies both accident outcomes and related safety issues that must be addressed through mitigating actions, EASA added.