What is Main Cause of B737 Accidents?

Phase of Flight / Type of Incident Number of Occurrences
Ground 8
RTO – Overrun 11
RTO – Remained on runway 3
Take-off 10
Climb 5
Cruise – Structural failure 2
Cruise – Other 4
Hijack / Bomb 4
Double Engine Failure 3
Fuel Exhaustion 1
Rudder Problem 2
Approach – Non Precision 16
Approach – Other 10
Landing – Collision 1
Landing – Short 5
Landing – Long 6
Landing – Heavy 15
Landing – Fast 4
Landing – Gear Up 1
Landing – LOC after touchdown 12
Go-Around 4

There have been 131 737 hull-losses, including 4 hijackings/bombings and 7 ground accidents. This may sound high but remember that over 5500 737’s have been built since 1967. This gives a 2.5% accident rate or approx 3 per year or one every 2.5 million flight hours. Furthermore, over 40% of occupants survive fatal 737 accidents.

The table below shows that more accidents have befallen the older aircraft. This is to be expected because they have amassed more flying hours / cycles and later generations have 38 years of design and technology improvements built in to them. A fairer comparison across the generations would be rate per flying hours or cycles but I do not have the data for this.

Series W/O’s No Built W/O Rate / A/C
737-1/200 102 1144 1 in 12
737-3/4/500 28 1990 1 in 76
737-NG 3 2500+ 1 in 833+

Details have been compiled from a variety of sources ie Aviation journals, books, news reports, internet sites (particularly the Aviation Safety Network) and of course the official accident reports, some of which is contradictory. Any additional information about any of these incidents would be gratefully received.

Chris Brady

(source : http://www.b737.org.uk)


1 Comment

Filed under Air Transport

One response to “What is Main Cause of B737 Accidents?

  1. 737-200 actually is a very safe planed that ever made on earth, but due to aging of navigation system and structures as well, this type become very fragile to accident or incident, especially in poor maintenance. For the newest type – 300, Boeing did improvement in engine type using CFM-56 series. This is quite and powerfull engine in that era. Dash 7 engine being to old to service in modern jet era.

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