Review the Year of 2018 with These Aviation Stories

Last year was a whirlwind and a game-changer for the aviation industry. Here’s a round up of our favorite stories from last year.

Now that we’ve crash-landed into 2019 we can reflect on the year that’s come and gone.

The aviation industry is a constantly evolving entity, moving in waves with the ever-increasing need for people to travel to every inch of the world. No stone is uncovered.

2018 was another story-filled year for the aviation industry. Productive, surprising, funny, and devastating all at once, it has provoked us to rethink what we can achieve in the sky, how the tech industry affects flight, and whether or not we should be up there at all.

Here are our 5 favorite aviation stories of 2018.

Gatwick Shut Down By Drones

Let’s start at the end. Beginning on the 19th of December in Sussex, England, a drone was spotted near Gatwick airport, causing the disruption of over 1,000 flights and the holiday plans of 140,000 passengers.

The airport was shut down for three days as police attempted to find a solution and a suspect. Whenever they would get close to re-opening runways, the drone would appear again, creating a near-comedy of events.

The event wasn’t considered a terror attack, but it did result in the suspicion, arrest, and eventual release of a drone-enthusiast couple that lived nearby.

Keep an eye on this one, as it’s still unfolding.

Airline Accidents

Since 2017, airline accidents have increased by 900%. That’s 561 deaths over 18 incidents. What’s surprising is that all but one of the fatalities occurred outside of North America and Europe. Iran, Nepal, and Russia accounted for almost 200 of the deaths, and are known for using older airplanes.

The rest of the deaths, save for the one freak incident on a Southwest Flight, were from a single crash in Cuba, and the Lion Air disaster in Indonesia.

When you look at the statistics, however, there were 4.5 billion flight passengers in the world in 2018, and only 555 perished. That tells us that more and more people are flying, and a fraction of a percentage of those people die as a result of an aviation accident.

Is That a Jet In Your Garage? Or…

The Flaris LAR 1 initially debuted 5 years ago, but begun test flights this year. It’s being called “the world’s smallest business jet” and it might just be true. Apparently, this thing can fit in a garage and carries the same amount of passengers and luggage as your sedan.

With 5 passengers plus luggage, the plane has a cruising speed of 430 mph and a range of over 1300 miles. If you’ve got a spare 2 million bucks, why not grab one of these for your collection?

Replacing Air Force One

Would you have guessed that replacing the airplanes in the Air Force One fleet was expensive? Despite criticizing the cost of replacing the crafts in 2016, Trump is getting some spiffy new rides to toss his umbrellas out of.

In mid-2018, the Pentagon confirmed that Boeing will get nearly $4 billion to build two new Air Force One’s. Since they’re doing it anyway, Trump is having the new ones painted with a red, white, and blue look.

Aviation Bankruptcy

While the Air Force One fleet is receiving an overhaul, airlines across the world are shutting down.

Swiss airline, Privatair, told their pilots midflight about their bankruptcy. Maybe not the wisest move!

Nicosia based airline, Cobalt, had their planes repossessed on the runways. Not the most ceremonial way to go out.

And Icelandic airline WOW Air was bought out by Indigo Partners, which could end up in ultra-low fares from Latin America to Russia via Iceland.

What Will 2019 Bring?

Those were our favorite aviation stories from 2018, but what will 2019 give us? Hopefully fewer drones, fewer fatalities, and less bankruptcy.

With more people flying every day, there’s sure to be great stories that come as well. Check out our news blog to keep up with the latest in aviation and contact us for your aircraft valuation needs.