Research group Ascend recently published their annual report on Business Aviation Safety. Business jets continued the trend for improving safety that has seen the accident rate more than halve in the past 10 years.

The report covers global aviation and includes all those aircraft types generally considered to be targeted at the private/corporate executive market but excluding 'airliner types', which may be used as executive/VVIP transports.

Overall business jets showed an improvement in their fatal accident rate, going from about one per 3,300 aircraft in 2010 to one per 5,000 aircraft last year. 2011 was the safest year ever for the class and continues the trend for improving safety. In 2011 there were only four fatal accidents, one each in China, Lebanon, Mexico and the US, but putting this in perspective the US has by far the largest fleet of business jets, with the European market being the next largest.

Although 2011 was a relatively poor year for business turboprops, this is really only in comparison with the business jets and with the good outcome the class had in 2010. Looking back over two decades, the overall trend for an improving accident rate for the business turboprops continues.

Note that these are global numbers, so the worst accidents were in India, Iraq and South Africa. The full report is available from Ascend.