Thursday, 29 December 2011

Airline accident rate on course for record low

Statistics compiled by IATA show that the global airline accident rate for this year will be the lowest ever recorded. The global airline accident rate up to November was 52% lower than the average for the previous five years. The current rate for 2011 stands at 0.34 accidents per million flights.

Perry Flint of IATA believes that this is a 'long term trend' rather than 2011being 'some kind of anomaly.' The number of deaths is at its lowest level since 2006 with 486 people dying in air crashes up to November compared with the previous low of 502 in 2008.

The main contributing factor to the improved safety record over the past 20 years is the advancement of cockpit databases which give accurate readings of planes locations. This has lead to a reduction in planes hitting obstructions such as mountains and air collisions.

Africa remains the most dangerous region in which to fly with 3.93 accidents per
millions flights, a figure which is lower than the average for the previous five years in the region.

There were no serious accidents in Europe and North Asia this year, according to IATA. North America recorded one serious accident which occurred on 20th August and killed 12 people. The plane was operated by First Air in Quebec.

The most common type of serious accident in which it was 'sufficient to destroy a jet' is when planes go off the runway during take off or landing and this counts for 23% of recorded crashes.

The statistics do not include crashes involving private aircraft or deaths attributed to acts of terrorism.