WASHINGTON — Flying under the cover of darkness in mountainous, unfamiliar terrain was something the Army avoided in early deployments to Afghanistan, where helicopters played a vital role in the fight.

But all that changed with greatly improved night-vision capabilities, more training and better tactics, techniques and procedures. Now the Army prefers to operate in what used to be an impossibly dangerous environment for a helicopter pilot.

With technological improvements and changes in how the Army manages its pilots and crew, the service has seen the number of aviation accidents in the years following congressional budget cuts — from 2013 to 2017 — hold relatively steady, a significant contrast to the rest of the military’s aviation community where mishaps have steadily climbed in recent years.

Army aviation mishaps rose 6 percent during the five year period from 2013 to 2017; and among the Army’s most-used manned rotary aircraft, total mishaps fell slightly, according to a new database of aviation mishaps published by the Military Times.

The accidents in the database range from Class A mishaps — the major accidents involving millions of dollars in damage or that cause fatalities or major injuries — down to more minor incidents that cause minimal damage costing more than $50,000 to repair or resulting in troops missing a day of work, known as Class C mishaps.