Balloon Safety Stats & Main Safety Issues

3 February 2021

As we work together as a community to fly safely and prevent accidents, it's important to understand where to focus our efforts. In this section you will find information about the main safety risks and safety statistics for Balloons. 

Key Risk Areas and Safety Issues

When it comes to focussing our safety efforts, it's useful to start by thinking about the kinds of accidents that we want to prevent. These are the "Key Risk Areas" that we refer to in the first graph below:

The main accident outcomes to prevent for Balloons

The graph below highlights the level of risk in the accidents and serious against the number of occurrenes. This means that we should focus our efforts on those towards the top right of the graph. The main accident outcomes are: 

  • Obstacle collision in flight. 
  • Aircraft upset.
  • Balloon landings.
  • Terrain collision.
Balloon Key Risk Areas

Safety issues and topics

When it comes to safety issues the graph below highlights the top safety issues in terms of risks and number of occurrences. This helps the whole balloon community to understand more about where we can focus our safety efforts for the greatest benefit. 

Balloon Safety Issues


Key Statistics

Below you can see the key statistics from the EASA Annual Safety Review 2020 - this review covers accidents and serious incidents up to 2019 and the report was published in 2020. In 2019, there was 1 fatal accident, 19 non-fatal accidents and 3 serious incidents. These are similar to those for the past 10 year period - so not much change in recent years. The graphs after the table provide you with the evolution of the data over the last 10 years. 

Balloons Key StatisticsYearly stats

Phase of flight and operation type

The next set of graphs from the provide some information about accidents in terms of flight phase and operation type. The majority of balloon accidents and serious incidents occur during landing. Hopefully it is interesting to note that there were no take-off accidents or serious incidents in 2019. In terms of operation types, you may not be surprised to find that most accidents occur during passengers and pleasure flights.

Balloon Flight Phase