The year 2012 was an extremely safe year for civil aviation, Aviation Safety Network data show. The Aviation Safety Network recorded a total of 23 fatal airliner accidents, resulting in 475 fatalities and 36 ground fatalities. Both figures are extremely lower than the ten-year average of 34 accidents and 773 fatalities.
In fact, 2012 was the safest year since 1945 by number of accidents.
The number of accidents involving passenger flights was the lowest since 1945: eleven accidents, as compared to the ten-year average of 16 accidents.
The low number of accidents comes as no surprise, according to ASN President Harro Ranter: “Since 1997 the average number of airliner accidents has shown a steady and persistent decline, probably for a great deal thanks to the continuing safety-driven efforts by international aviation organisations such as ICAO, IATA, Flight Safety Foundation and the aviation industry.”
Also, 2012 marked the longest period without a fatal airliner accident in modern aviation history. This record period of 68 days ended on January 30 with the crash of an Antonov 28.
The Bhoja Air Boeing 737 accident on April 20 ended the longest period (632 days, since July 28, 2010) without an airliner accident killing over 100 people.
The worst accident happened on June 3, 2012 when a Dana Air MD-83 crashed while on approach to Lagos, Nigeria, killing 153 on board and ten on the ground.
Three out of 23 accident airplanes (13%) were operated by airlines on the E.U. “black list” as opposed to 25% the year before.
The E.U. added a total of 38 airlines to their list of airlines banned within the EU, and removed two airlines based on improved safety records.
Africa still is the least safe continent, accounting for 22% of all fatal airliner accidents while the continent only accounts for approximately 3 percent of all world aircraft departures.
This is also reflected by the fact that, on average, African nations score 4.5 on a scale of 10 in aviation safety audits performed by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). And the airlines of several nations are not allowed to fly into the E.U. (14) and United States (6).
The Aviation Safety Network is an independent organisation located in the Netherlands. Founded in 1996. It has the aim to provide everyone with a (professional) interest in aviation with up-to-date, complete and reliable authoritative information on airliner accidents and safety issues. ASN is an exclusive service of the Flight Safety Foundation (FSF). The figures have been compiled using the airliner accident database of the Aviation Safety Network, the Internet leader in aviation safety information. The Aviation Safety Network uses information from authoritative and official sources.