Air Force announces 2006 as safest year in aviation

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Julie Weckerlein
  • Air Force Print News
Fiscal year 2006 was the safest year in aviation ever for the Air Force.

The year marked the lowest number of major aircraft accidents and fatalities within the Department of Defense, said the Chief of Air Force Safety Maj. Gen. Stan Gorenc recently.

According to the statistics, the Air Force recorded 19 major aviation mishaps, eight destroyed aircraft and one aviation fatality.

"It's quite an historical accomplishment," General Gorenc said. "In 1947, the Air Force recorded over 1,500 major accidents and over 500 aircraft destroyed at a cost of over 500 servicemember lives. Obviously, there's been a continuous culture change in which safety has come into the forefront with everything that we do."

He credited great leadership and dedicated Airmen for such a successful year, emphasizing that education has been key to preventing mishaps.

"In safety, there's been a strong leadership approach," he said. "We're continually educating people on where they fit in the bigger picture, and we've been motivating them to be safe and to take care of each other. But at the end of it all, it comes down to personal responsibility. Airmen are going out there each day to be productive and as safe as possible."

General Gorenc said that while it's great to reflect on such a great year, it's important that Airmen do not let their guard down.

"The Air Force is a very vibrant organization," he said, "There's a continuous rotation of people coming and going, deploying or moving on. We have to stay engaged [in a safety mindset] by continually educating, motivating and activating our Airmen to incorporate safety into their everyday activities and routines."