Many parts of Alaska are best accessed through small planes and helicopters due to the unpredictable weather and rough terrain. Yet for many residents, the idea of flying can be horrifying due to their overwhelming fear of aviation accidents. Examining the facts behind aviation accidents may provide context for that fear.
How statistically likely is it that you will die in a plane crash?
Airplane crash statistics reveal the safety of aviation. In 2016, a study revealed that you have only a one in 20 million chance of dying in a commercial flight accident. Contrary to popular belief, most aviation accidents do not result in the death of passengers. Between the years of 2012 and 2016, a total of 140 airplane crashes occurred and only two of those resulted in a death.
What are the common causes of aviation accidents?
While accidents are rare, when they do happen, they are most often the result of a few specific causes. The most common reasons for aviation accidents are the following:
- Pilot mistakes
- Poor weather
- Mechanical problems
- Air traffic controller error
What are the safest methods of air travel?
While the statistics concerning commercial air travel reveal flying to be a safe method of transportation, the statistics for smaller aircraft do not provide as much encouragement. In 2014, commercial U.S. flights experienced zero deaths due to accidents. In the same year, more than 200 people died in accidents involving small, privately owned planes.
Assigning blame can be a complex process
On the occasions that you are involved in an aviation accident, assigning blame can be difficult, because there are usually multiple parties to hold accountable. However, if you are involved in an accident, you are entitled to this information in order to decide what your next legal step should involve.