TABLE OF CONTENTSii
I. AVIATION TRENDS4
II. TYPES, CAUSES AND WAYS TO PREVENT RUNWAY ACCIDENTS 5 a. RUNWAY INCURSIONS6
b. RUNWAY EXCURSIONS9
* REFERENCES CITED15
Aircrafts are design and built to be able to operate in complex environments. They are capable of flying with poor visibility conditions and in all types of adverse weather. However in the airspace above is not where they face the biggest challenges. The most critical period of a flight, where the risks of accidents are predominantly high and catastrophic is during takeoffs and landings. The runway environment is far more risky than then open skies, since at an airport there are greater space limitations, heavier traffic flow and more congestion. Runway accidents can cause major aircraft damages, as well as considerable injuries and deaths. Therefore runway safety and best practice implementations has become a top priority in the aviation industry.
Passengers are being safely transported every year thanks to the operations of aircrafts. Aircrafts are the fastest and most convenient form of transportation that exists. According to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) the world air traffic in 2011 was expected to rise by 4.7 percent, and by 2012 that increased is expected to be at 4.9 percent (Graham, 2011, p.3). Regardless of the economic recession, people still choose to fly to get from one location to another. Some studies suggest that the increase in competition of participating airlines has made it feasible for people across all sectors to enjoy the benefits of flying. Also low cost carrier such as Ryanair and JetBlue provide an opportunity for working and middle class people to enjoy the benefits and convenience of flying.
However convenience is not only the reason why people chose to travel in a large metal body beast, aviation is also the safest form of transportation that exist. Findings from a research done by the RITA Bureau of Transportation Statistics support that between highway, railroad, and water vessel; air travel is the form of transpiration with the lowest amount of accidents. And while some regions of the world may not have the safest infrastructure or best monitoring bodies to regulate airlines` safety compliance; globally, aviation still has a remarkable low rate of 4.1 accidents per million departures.
That being said, accidents still happen from time to time, and history shows that aircraft accidents can be as equally catastrophic, if not worst on ground as in the air. To this date, “the industry's worst disaster remains the collision between two Boeing 747s on the runway at Tenerife in 1977, in which 583 people died.” (Crosby, n.d.). Runway safety is currently the industry’s highest risk area, so there is a major focus on using resources to effectively reduce runway risks, identify runway accident types, causes and prevention measures.
TYPES, CAUSES AND WAYS TO PREVENT RUNWAY ACCIDENTS
Each year in United States in about 500 towered airports, pilots complete more than 50 million takeoffs and landings. These are handled and supported by approximately 15,000 air traffic controllers. And as if this wasn't risky enough to manage in airport grounds, add to the equation hundreds of thousands of individuals driving vehicles. (Jones and Takemoto, 2009). Due to all this activity, it is safe to say that the risks for a disastrous accident are predominantly high during takeoffs and landings, which are referred to as the critical phases of a flight.
Unlike open skies space where you have millions of square miles available, the runway environment has far more limitation and restrictions. In some airports, during peak hours you can have an aircraft taking-off or landing on intersecting runways as...