- General aviation
"General aviation" refers to all flights other than military and scheduled airline flights, both private and commercial. General aviation flights range from
gliders and powered parachutes to large, non-scheduled cargo jet flights. As a result, the majority of the world's air traffic falls into this category, and most of the world's airports serve general aviation exclusively.
United States, there are 5,288 community airports, almost all of which exclusively serve general aviation aircraft. According to the U.S. Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, general aviation provides more than one percent of the United States' GDP, accounting for 1.3 million jobs in professional services and manufacturing[ [http://www.gaservingamerica.com/our_economy/economy.htm AOPA USA's General Aviation website] .] .
General aviation covers a huge range of activities, both commercial and non-commercial, including private flying,
flight training, air ambulance, police aircraft, aerial firefighting, air charter, bush flying, glidingand many others.
Regulation and safety
Most countries have authorities that oversee all
civil aviation, including general aviation, adhering to the standardized codes of the International Civil Aviation Organization(ICAO). Examples include the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) in Great Britain, the Luftfahrt-Bundesamt(LBA) in Germany, Transport Canadain Canada, Director General of Civil Aviation(DGCA) in Indiaand the Federal Aviation Administration(FAA) in the United States.
Since it includes both non-scheduled commercial operations and private operations, with aircraft of many different types and sizes, and pilots with a variety of different training and experience levels, it is not possible to make blanket statements about the
regulationor safety record of general aviation. At one extreme, in most countries business jetsand large cargo jets face most of the same regulations as scheduled air transportand fly mostly to the same airports. Commercial bush flyingand air ambulanceoperations normally do not operate under as heavy a regulatory burden, and often only use small airports or off-airport strips, where there is less governmental oversight. Nonetheless they must obey the same regulations as any other type of flying.
Aviation accident rate statistics are necessarily estimates. According to the U.S.
National Transportation Safety Board, in 2005 general aviation in the United States (excluding charter) suffered 1.31 fatal accidents for every 100,000 hours of flying in that country, compared to 0.016 for scheduled airline flights. [ [http://www.ntsb.gov/aviation/Table1.htm "NTSB accident rates by flying category"] ] In Canada, recreational flying accounted for 0.7 fatal accidents for every 100,000 hours, while air taxi accounted for 1.0 fatal accident for every 100,000 hours. [ [http://www.tc.gc.ca/CivilAviation/flight2005/tp13521/indicators.htm "Transport Canada accident rates by flying category"] ]
General aviation in the United Kingdom
General aviation in Europe
* [http://www.iaopa.org International Aircraft Owners and Pilots Associations]
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