Most Common Causes of Helicopter Accidents

Helicopter rides can be fun and exciting and even luxurious at times. But helicopters can also be dangerous, and fatal accidents happen every year. Although helicopters have occasional accidents, you don’t have to let that stop you from riding in one. Helicopter accidents are usually preventable and knowing the most common causes of these accidents can lead to safe helicopter rides.

Factors that contribute to helicopter accidents

Helicopters are complex machines with many mechanical parts working together. The must function properly to get you in the air, to your destination and back on the ground safely. They must be designed and operated with the utmost skill and care to fly safely.

There are three factors that most commonly lead to helicopter accidents: operational error, mechanical malfunction and electrical malfunction.

Helicopter accidents caused by operational error

Operational error is caused by actual human error, typically in the flight planning, conduct of the flight or in training or maintenance. Operational error accidents can be caused by:

  • Not operating the aircraft within its limitations
  • Not flying in safe environmental conditions
  • Not properly planning the flight
  • Improper maintenance
  • Improper training of flight or maintenance
  • Using faulty manuals, training guides, checklists or operational procedures
  • Faulty oversight of the flight

Helicopter accidents caused by mechanical malfunction

Mechanical malfunctions happen when a part of the aircraft fails or fails to function properly. These problems can be caused by:

  • An improper design
  • Inadequate testing
  • A faulty manufacturer
  • Inadequate property control and operational monitoring
  • Poor maintenance
  • Improper installation

Helicopter accidents caused by electrical malfunction

In this case, an electrical source stops working or malfunctions in some way. Electrical malfunctions can be caused by:

  • The electrical source malfunctions
  • An electrical short occurs
  • An electrical component malfunctions
  • Inadequate design, testing, quality control or operational monitoring