64

I'd like to answer this question by debunking the premise of the question: that most plane crashes happen when planes fall out of the sky, and that it's like rock climbing where the higher you are, the more likely a fall will kill you. While it sounds believable, it's almost entirely false, and since it isn't diving out of the sky that kills you, lowering ...


61

It would likely create a more deadly situation. In aviation altitude is your friend. Generally speaking altitude in the case of an emergency buys you time to work the problem. Generally you want to be as high as practical for the aircraft in question. Altitude also buys you glide distance to find a suitable landing location in an emergency. Airplanes ...


39

The amount of resources that go into commercial aviation are really amazing -- the amount of time, talent, money, and effort that have gone into making the airlines the safest mode of travel known to recorded history is really extraordinary, and the results reflect that. Design Aircraft are expensive, but a part of that expense is the extreme care that has ...


30

Yes learn both, but... not at the same time. As Dave says, there are too many differences to be absorbing simultaneously. It's like a new airline pilot taking a type course on a Dash 8 and an RJ at the same time. It'll burn you out. If all this is a hobby activity in the first place with no urgent time lines, drop the power training for now and go take a ...


25

Cloud, you are making a huge inference from a few small data points. But in any case, to the basic question, which is actually a very good one: In terms of the chance of getting killed, (what you seem to be looking for), maybe, marginally, but not enough to rule out operating from grass. If you know what you are doing, and make allowances, I would say ...


19

Before I start, remember that we're talking about statistics of location in the aircraft, within statistics of survival of an accident (95%), which is itself dependent on a statistic of particular type of accident (approx 85% have no fatalities at all), within something which is already a very unlikely event (an aviation accident). So let us for a moment ...


19

There is no general safe or unsafe seat rule - it really depends on the circumstances of any mishap. If the plane runs into a mountain, the rear seats give you more crush zone, so the deceleration is lower and stretched out over time to sustainable levels. However, if the plane comes in too low during landing and strikes ground first with the tail, those ...


19

I would say that it is a reasonably safe aircraft, but, like most aircraft of that class, often operated in unsafe conditions. The Wikipedia page does not have description for many of the listed accidents, but you can turn to the Aviation Safety Network which does. There are 41 total hull losses listed there. From them: Most common type of accident is ...


17

Other answers have explained why height is a good thing. I don't want to elaborate on that, but to focus on one aspect of the question's reasoning. It's implicit in the question that a falling object gains velocity as it falls, and hence that an aircraft falling from a greater height will reach a greater (and more destructive) velocity at the point of ...


16

One (of several) incidents that I remember was Pan Am Flight 759. It encountered windshear after takeoff from New Orleans' Moisant Airport July 9, 1982 and crashed, killing all aboard and several on the ground.


16

From the Wikipedia article on the Tomahawk: Safety record: According to the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association Air Safety Foundation, which published a Safety Highlight report on the Piper Tomahawk, the Piper Tomahawk has a one-third lower accident rate per flying hour than the comparable Cessna 150/152 series of two-place benchmark trainers. The ...


14

First of all, Ryanair has more than 700,000 flights per year now, but not during their entire 35 year existence. The total number of flights you give is therefore too high. Assuming aircraft accidents are purely statistical (which is not true, of course), one can estimate the number of accidents you expect using a Poisson distribution: the probability of ...


13

Another factor: commercial airliners tend to fly at high altitudes, over most bad weather and conditions of poor visibility for most of their flight time. Light planes are typically unpressurized, with a ceiling of 12,500 feet (up to 15k feet for short periods of time), which puts them in the conditions of bad weather or poor visibility, not only during ...


12

The FAA has a study on it you can find here the study is worth reading completely but the important parts of the conclusion seem to be, Current Brace Position This position (head against the seat back, hands on top of the seat back) was evaluated for three common types of seat backs. This position was only successful for locked-out ...


12

The passage you're asking about is a paraphrase of something Boeing spokeswoman Julie O'Donnell said. If you follow the citation in the article, you can see exactly what she said, and when she said it. "During the 1950s and 1960s, fatal accidents occurred about once every 200,000 flights," says Julie O’Donnell, a spokeswoman for Boeing. "Today, the ...


11

The statistic of 100,000 flights per day is a global one, and globally it is not true that there were no commercial airline fatalities in 2017. Per the Aviation Safety Network, there were 7 fatal incidents of commercial passenger aircraft in 2017. It's true that none of these were in the US, and most of these were smaller aircraft that do not get widely ...


10

I had three days to burn so I took a look.) Comparative data was very difficult to find beyond accident counts, so determining relative safety is problematic. No one that I could find tracks or estimates the number of flights/hours for gliders, even the Soaring Society of America, so this is all interesting but essentially meaningless. Even if such data ...


10

It is unreasonable to assume that a busier airport has a higher rate of fatalities compared to a smaller airport. There is just no logical reason to think so. The total number of fatalities may well be higher simply because there is a larger number of flights, but I know that is not what you are asking. You might think that busier airports would have more ...


10

Intentionally with a large aircraft, yes. There was however an instance in 1945, where a B-25 Mitchell collided with the Empire State building. This however was an accident. There have been several suicides by airplane where the aircraft was deliberately crashed into buildings, such as the C172 which was crashed into a Tampa FL high rise in 2002 or the ...


9

To add to the several good answers here consider the human implications of slower travel: crews will be at the controls for longer. But tired crews are a significant factor in risk. In principle you could land to swap for fresh crew (and take on fresh consumables), but take-off, taxi, and landing are the most dangerous parts of a flight. (You could also ...


9

The link is not wrong but your math is a bit misguided. Just because an accident occurred on average every XXX,XXX flights does not mean that on flight XXX,XXX+1 there will be another accident, thats simply not how statistics work. This also gets complicated due to the FAA's historical records and how the term accident has been used over the years. As ...


8

There are a number of reasons the brace position is recommended. (apologies if graphic) If, in an emergency landing there are a number of jolts or a hard stop of the aircraft, think of kinetics - if your head is thrown forward about a metre with your hips restrained by the belt, that's going to whack your head against something at high speed, and cause more ...


8

is there anything I as a passenger can do to improve the safety of the flight You should do exactly what your told, when your told and make sure you keep well clear of spinning propellers. You will have a marshall or the pilot themselves guiding you when airside - do exactly as you're told! what pre-flight checks should the pilot make before taking-off ...


7

The simple answer is: none. Flying an airliner (never mind the difficulties of getting into a locked cockpit) is not just a matter of wrestling with some controls. And, unfortunately, you would indeed need to be "some sort of pilot" to do that, including "just" being able to "communicate with ATC and perform an auto-land". Even if you were a qualified ...


7

Qantas to Singapore, onwards to Japan with Jetstar, also owned by Qantas. From this Wikipedia article: In 2014, Qantas was rated the world's safest airline by Airline Ratings. Rainman already knew.. For jet transport, Qantas is a zero-fatality-rate airline, has been for over 50 years, flying some of the longest ...


7

I'd argue fall and spring bring more unpredictable weather, and slippery runways are year-round in the tropics. That being said, for all jet (commercial) accidents, the weather-related contributing threats are: Meteorology (e.g., failure to identify threats before a flight) 30% Windy conditions 16% Poor visibility 10% Thunderstorms 9% Icing 1% Poor ...


7

Each time you interpret statistical values, you need to look at both, the mean value and the mean deviation. The mean value of incidents per flight per year gives you the expectation value. That would be the 2 to 3 that you cited. Now you have to look at the distribution. Many statistics are shaped like the famous Gauss bell. The statistic of accidents per ...


7

John K already gave a great answer about the runway surface itself and there are some other points that might be worth mentioning too. Grass runways are often uncontrolled, short, rough, obstructed, and generally different from paved ones. That's a big generalization, of course, but it's worth thinking about the wider runway environment. Uncontrolled. ...


6

Large commercial flights, two engines, two pilots. More eyes and hands to handle loss of an engine. Very high recurrent training standards mandated. Owner flown and other private pilot flights, it's usually attributed to lack of training. Flying into IFR weather without the rating, or practice, or equipment (think icing conditions). Or fuel exhaustion. ...


6

You didn't mention any particular country, but for the US I found an NTSB report called On the Safety of Parachute Jump Operations. It's from 2008 so some of it may be dated, but it says that no reliable data exist (emphasis mine): According to USPA safety records, from 1992 through 2007, about 30 parachutists per year were killed in jumping mishaps. ...


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