The NTSB yesterday issued Safety Recommendations relating to the FAA’s collection and reporting of general aviation activity. According to the NTSB, “[v]alid activity data are necessary to compare the accident rates for different aircraft types and types of operations, to establish baseline measures that can be used to identify and track accident trends, and to assess the effectiveness of safety improvement efforts.” When the Board analyzed the methods currently used to produce those estimates, it found the existing data lacking.
The Board recommended that the FAA (1) Develop, validate, and document an unbiased method for generating and revising activity estimates based on nonscheduled 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 and Part 91, Subpart K, operator surveys or reporting; (2) Require Part 91, Subpart K, fractional ownership operators to report activity on an annual basis to include total hours flown, revenue flight hours flown, revenue miles flown, and number of departures by category/class of aircraft; and (3) Develop, validate, and document an unbiased method for generating and revising activity estimates based on surveys or reporting of general aviation operations.
Additionally, the NTSB reiterated its previous recommendations that the FAA (1) Identify measures independent of the General Aviation and Air Taxi Survey that can be used to check the accuracy of nonairline flight hour estimates; and (2) Implement a program that will (a) measure and track the currency of aircraft owner contact information in the Civil Aircraft Registry and (b) systematically improve the currency of this information in a measurable way.
If you would additional information regarding the recommmendations, you may contact the NTSB directly at (202) 314-6177.