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Informal Poll


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Poll: Your personal involvement in helicopter and auto accidents (243 member(s) have cast votes)

Have you known a pilot personally who has crashed in a helicopter? (it can be yourself)

  1. Yes (170 votes [69.67%])

    Percentage of vote: 69.67%

  2. No (74 votes [30.33%])

    Percentage of vote: 30.33%

How many pilots have you personally known who were fatally injured in a helicopter accident?

  1. 1 (43 votes [17.62%])

    Percentage of vote: 17.62%

  2. 2 (14 votes [5.74%])

    Percentage of vote: 5.74%

  3. 3 or more (32 votes [13.11%])

    Percentage of vote: 13.11%

  4. None (155 votes [63.52%])

    Percentage of vote: 63.52%

Have you known a person close to you who was involved in an automobile accident? (it can be yourself)

  1. Yes (238 votes [97.54%])

    Percentage of vote: 97.54%

  2. No (6 votes [2.46%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.46%

How many people have you personally known who were fatally injured in an auto accident?

  1. 1 (59 votes [24.18%])

    Percentage of vote: 24.18%

  2. 2 (34 votes [13.93%])

    Percentage of vote: 13.93%

  3. 3 or more (71 votes [29.10%])

    Percentage of vote: 29.10%

  4. None (80 votes [32.79%])

    Percentage of vote: 32.79%

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#1 vertrefadmin

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Posted 15 March 2006 - 08:53

There are many ideas out there that flying is safer than driving. I thought an informal poll might shed some light on the subject.
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#2 Eric Hunt

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Posted 15 March 2006 - 16:04

Another poll with questionable statistics.

Total votes: 12

But! Only 3 answers to "Do you know a pilot.." and 3 to "Do you know a driver.."

Looks like the poll is counting every tick (3 people putting 4 ticks each) rather than the number of people voting.

A better question to ask might be "Do you know any helicopter pilots who have had a car accident?" to see if pilots are safer drivers.

#3 vertrefadmin

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Posted 15 March 2006 - 20:36

Statistically it is correct. There were 12 votes from 3 poll visitors. Each separate question is viewed as a separate vote. Just look at the numbers in each poll question. The total votes on the bottom is total for all the poll questions asked.

Does that make sense?

Another question along your suggested question could be: "If you were a helicopter pilot who crashed an automobile would you ever crash a motorcycle into an airplane?" It's not a formal statistics survey. Just trying to get a general idea.
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#4 67november

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Posted 15 March 2006 - 22:29

Hey Rey, you don't have any 0 (zero) options there! :o
spinning wings are better than fixed.

#5 flingwing206

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Posted 15 March 2006 - 23:31

Thing is, I know a lot more car drivers, as a matter of fact, every adult I know drives a car. Stands to reason that it's likely I personally know people who have died in cars. Hell, I've watched people die in their cars right in front of me. I know a lot fewer helicopter pilots (by an order of hundreds, I'd guess), yet I know (as in personally met) two people who have died in helicopters. Which is safer? Well, at 1,000' AGL, I'll choose the helicopter any day!

#6 vertrefadmin

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 01:50

You're right 67november. Let me add that.

flingwing: One of the reasons I put this poll on here is due to some of the safety professionals I have been talking to say that 1 in 4 helicopter pilots will be fatally injured in a helicopter crash within 10 years. My instructor told me that a pilot has one accident in 10 years as an average (he died in a helicopter crash 10 years after he told me that)

I'm just trying to see how many people have empirical knowledge on this subject. Personally I have known 6 close friends who have died in aviation accidents, 3 of which were helicopter (in 19 years of flying) and only 1 close friend and 1 family member die in a car crash (in over 36 years). I have seen over a dozen helicopter accidents of close friends which did not result in fatalities. I have had many friends and family members in auto accidents but they were usually minor injuries. (I am not counting just auto accidents that I have seen with fatalities. I flew EMS so I've seen several (over 60) fatalities on the highway.)
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#7 flingwing206

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 09:18

...some of the safety professionals I have been talking to say that 1 in 4 helicopter pilots will be fatally injured in a helicopter crash within 10 years.

Wow - that's about the odds pilots faced flying in Vietnam. 25% of all helicopter pilots will die in crashes in the next 10 years? I'm not sure there will be that many crashes period in the next 10 years. It may be that one out of four pilots will have an accident in the next ten years, but to hit that 25% fatality rate, we'd have to lose hundreds of helicopter pilots a year. In 2004, in the USA, there were 33 accidents resulting in fatalities. 1978 was the worst year in the last 35, with 71 fatal crashes. Now 33 fatal crashes ain't great - that's a fatal crash every ten days. We can do better.

There's no question that due to the nature of the mission(s), helicopter flying holds higher risks than your average airplane flight, and definitely more risk than driving. However, unless we are all headed into battle, one-in-four is a bit of an overestimation.

#8 vertrefadmin

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 11:37

Wow - that's about the odds pilots faced flying in Vietnam. 25% of all helicopter pilots will die in crashes in the next 10 years? I'm not sure there will be that many crashes period in the next 10 years. It may be that one out of four pilots will have an accident in the next ten years, but to hit that 25% fatality rate, we'd have to lose hundreds of helicopter pilots a year. In 2004, in the USA, there were 33 accidents resulting in fatalaties. 1978 was the worst year in the last 35, with 71 fatal crashes. Now 33 fatal crashes ain't great - that's a fatal crash every ten days. We can do better.

There's no question that due to the nature of the mission(s), helicopter flying holds higher risks than your average airplane flight, and definitely more risk than driving. However, unless we are all headed into battle, one-in-four is a bit of an overestimation.


That's what I am getting at. I think that stat is for all of aviation (probably including military). Anyone have the stats from Iraq and Afghanistan Helicopter Accidents?
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#9 vertrefadmin

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 21:03

Here's an interesting article on helicopter fatalities:

http://www.bls.gov/o...41022ar01p1.htm
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#10 flingwing206

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 21:54

Er - I think that report doesn't differentiate between fatalities on the ground and from crashes. So we're counting rotor strikes, injuries to mechanics and so on. This summary has numbers about inflight injuries/fatalities only.

#11 vertrefadmin

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Posted 16 March 2006 - 23:39

Good link flingwing206. Thanks!

Here's another one for more recent rotorcraft accidents under investigation:

http://www.faa.gov/d...eliminary_data/
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#12 vertrefadmin

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Posted 17 March 2006 - 08:56

Er - I think that report doesn't differentiate between fatalities on the ground and from crashes. So we're counting rotor strikes, injuries to mechanics and so on. This summary has numbers about inflight injuries/fatalities only.


Just an FYI but looking at the ground accidents and incidents is just as important as going through the in flight accidents and incidents. If accidents are happening on the ground, chances are they may be affecting things happening in the air. The overall safety culture of a company is shown in overall safety; not just in flight operations. I would be wary of a company that only focused strictly on air safety and did not look closely at its ground accidents and incidents.
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#13 flingwing206

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Posted 17 March 2006 - 09:13

Just an FYI but looking at the ground accidents and incidents is just as important as going through the in flight accidents and incidents.

Absolutely true, I agree 100%!

I was merely pointing out the reason for the differing sets of numbers.

#14 Gomer Pylot

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Posted 27 August 2006 - 09:38

I don't know how the 'professionals' came up with the 25% number, but I'm very skeptical. In my company, probably half of us have 25 years or more with the company, and the number who have had accidents or even incidents is far below 10%. And it's a rather large company. The accident rate in the Gulf of Mexico, with something over 600 helicopters flying daily, is about 3 per 100,000 flying hours, historically. That doesn't even begin to come close to the 25% number. Sounds like a number someone just pulled out of his fundament.
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#15 67november

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Posted 27 August 2006 - 18:08

I would say these hired "professionals" are nothing more than consultants that were hired to put stats together and were nothing more than people who don't know the first thing about the safety of this industry.
spinning wings are better than fixed.

#16 Guest_pokey_*

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 10:36

The poll should have included "airplanes" too. I lost one friend to helicopter accident, 3 to airplane, and none to driving a car, or truck,,,,,but 2 to motorcycles.

So in my case of the ppls that i know? flying is twice as dangerous as ground travel----OR? maybe i just associate w/ good drivers & bad pilots?

#17 bqmassey

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Posted 30 May 2007 - 07:24

Let's not vote in this poll anymore. I think it'd be best if the poll was ended.

#18 lv@1stflite

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Posted 31 August 2007 - 01:42

I knew a guy that flew his heli into a fixed wing, and the both landed on a car....... Does that muck up the stats?
"It ain't rocket surgery!"

#19 veeany

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Posted 23 September 2007 - 10:52

Totally independent stats on my site, generated from a database of more than 12000 accidents, all done on the fly (no pun intended) so as soon as an accident is added the stats change.

Will be filterable soon, but for now

http://www.griffin-h...cidentstats.asp Stats by type and year, or
http://www.griffin-h...tsmonthyear.asp by month and year.

If you click on the row or column headers or the figures in the table the next level down is presented.

I am aware of about 25 duplicates spread randomly around which will alter the figures slightly but not by much.

Gary

Edited by veeany, 23 September 2007 - 10:53.


#20 mtbman07

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Posted 12 October 2007 - 05:19

That is a really nice data base you have built there. Quite interesting to look back through all the stats as well. ;)




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