Flying is getting safer by the year

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Afraid of flying? Don’t be. The number of fatal plane accidents was lower in 2016 than in previous years. The past 12 months have been one of the safest periods for commercial air travel. In 2016 there were seven fatal incidents, leading to 271 deaths in total. International aviation researchers of to70 discovered that the rates of  both fatal and non-fatal incidents have decreased.

2016-accident-data_chartThe chances of being in a fatal plane accident is just 0.18 per million flights, which is roughly one in every five million flights. It is far more likely you get struck by lightning.

While the statistics show that travelling by plane was safer than before, the cases of unlawful interference warrant serious concern says TO70.  Two of the seven fatal incidents in 2016 appear to be acts of terrorism. With the attack on the airport in Brussels in mind TO70 pleads to shift improvement efforts from aircraft safety to airport security.

Causes to the fatal accidents in 2016:

  • In February, a suicide-bomb attack on a Somali airline killed the perpetrator damaging the aeroplane that landed safely.
  • All 23 persons aboard a sight-seeing flight in Nepal were killed when the Twin Otter aeroplane crashed into terrain.
  • In March, all 62 occupants of a flydubai Boeing 737 were killed when the pilot lost control after a go-around in bad weather, crashing at Rostov-on-Don Airport in Russia.
  • In May, an EgyptAir A320 crashed into the sea near Cyprus, killing 66 people, the cause of which is still unclear.
  • A firefighter at Dubai Airport died in August after an Emirates Boeing 777 crashed and caught fire.
  • In November, a LaMia charter flight crashed in Colombia, apparently from fuel exhaustion, killing 71 people.
  • On 6 December, 47 people died in Pakistan when a PIA flight with apparent engine failure crashed into mountains, the investigation of which has just begun.

Frequent causes of non-fatal accidents in 2016:

  • Uncontained engine failures and fires from engine parts exiting sideways at speed.
  • Runway excursions, some resulting in collapsed landing gear.
  • Low-speed ground incidents of aeroplanes hitting obstacles. (source: TO70’s Civil Aviation Safety Review 2016)
About To70:
To70 is one of the world’s leading aviation consultancies, founded in the Netherlands with offices in Europe, Australia, Asia, and Latin America.

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