Aviation Safety: Ground Accidents And Their Prevention


Aviation is one of the strategically important spheres of the modern world. It supports the high speed of globalization and provides people with new opportunities for better cooperation. Thousands of flights are performed every year, with millions of passengers carried. It means that safety issues acquire the top priority as it is critical to avoid accidents and save people’s lives. Unfortunately, regardless of numerous attempts, there are still emergencies causing severe damage to all parties involved in the functioning of the sphere. Ground accidents belong to this cohort, and it is vital to establish an effective procedure for their prevention to avoid undesired outcomes.


The given type of undesired events remains one of the problematic issues for civil aviation. Ground accidents can be determined as occurrences happening when the aircraft is parked or during the maintenance phase. These might result in significant financial losses and cause damage to individuals working at the ramp or specific maintenance area. Furthermore, ground accidents might precondition severe air accidents. For this reason, international agencies such as ICAO, IATA, and FAA are focused on investigating the major causes of such events’ emergence and their prevention.

Analysis of previous ground accidents shows that several major causes might result in the emergence of an undesired or risky situation. Ground damage usually does not emerge because of a single reason. The existing security systems and guidelines regulate the work of the maintenance service and specialists, meaning that critical flaws might be detected. However, it means that a ground accident should be viewed as a combination of errors, rude violations, and specific circumstances resulting in damage to the aircraft or collision.

The human factor is often viewed as the most common cause of the occurrence of ground accidents. It is determined as the error emerging due to a poor understanding of the existing instructions, lack of attention, disregard of rules, or other actions linked to the activity of specialists. In aviation, the human factor is one of the common causes of accidents resulting in severe damages, injuries, and deaths. The problem is complicated because the person might not recognize his/her mistake until the undesired results are apparent.

Poor reporting is another significant cause of the emergence of ground accidents in aviation. The problem is that unreported ground damage might not harm flight safety at the initial stages; however, it might promote the development of critical outcomes and the destruction of aircraft. Unreported damage is a severe issue as, in many cases, it creates the basis for new, severer accidents. The ineffective reporting procedure or disregard of existing guidelines is a serious challenge to aviation safety.

Finally, mistakes during maintenance should also be mentioned as the frequent cause of ground accidents. The lack of the needed equipment, inexperienced specialists, or violation of current maintenance rules might create the basis for the critical deterioration of the situation and undesired outcomes. Thus, the causes mentioned above should be addressed to ensure the increased safety of flights. For this reason, prevention activities aim to reduce the probability of such mistakes and eliminate the causes of their emergence.

Establishing an effective reporting practice is viewed as one of the possible prevention activities. The employees’ inability to report can result in the growth in the problem’s complexity and long-term outcomes. For this reason, it is vital to cultivate a reporting culture with clear guidelines on how to act if any issue is detected. It should introduce transparent and effective procedures available to workers. They should be encouraged to share information about detected problems, which is key to improving safety.

Hazard identification and risk management could be viewed as potent prevention too. ICAO, IATA, and FAA emphasize the critical importance of the in-time detection of possible threats and the introduction of ways to respond to them. The Ground Accident Prevention (GAP) program is one of the possible methods to prevent ground accidents by creating a list of the most common risks and approaches to their management. It might help to avoid potentially dangerous situations and promote higher awareness levels among the staff.

Finally, training is considered one of the effective approaches to addressing the identified problem. It might help to reduce the probability of mistakes linked to the human factor. The regular evaluation of the employees’ skills and provision of required materials to improve them is a key to better maintenance practices. It might also help to minimize potential risks in the future. For this reason, ICAO and IATA develop guidelines and courses for airlines to guarantee specialists have access to the latest information on the problem and can use it in practice.


Altogether, ground accidents remain a serious issue for the aviation sector. The major causes might include human error, poor reporting, risk assessment, and improper maintenance. Regardless of the factor causing the undesired outcome, these events might cause substantial harm. For this reason, regulatory agencies focus on preventing ground accidents. The recommended approaches include improving the existing reporting culture, potent risk assessment and management procedures, and training for specialists working at the ramp area. It might help to cultivate the necessary safety culture and attain better results.