EgyptAir crash: Is flying still safe?

Flying is still the safest form of travel, despite the recent deadly crashes. (Shutterstock)

Despite Thursday's EgyptAir plane crash, which is believed to have killed all 66 people on board, travelers need not be too worried when choosing planes as means of transportation.

Although the last year seems to have seen more than a fair share of deadly civil aviation incidents - including a crash from a Dubai airliner in March near the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don that killed all 62 people on board – flying is still one of the safest forms of travel.

Last year saw three deadly airliner crashes: In October, a Russian Metrojet flight blew up mid-air from an onboard bomb over Egypt’s Sinai peninsula, killing 224. In March, a Germanwings Flight crashed into the French Alps at the hands of an apparently suicidal pilot, killing 150. In February, a TransAsia Airways flight crashed into a river in Taiwan's capital of Taipei, killing 43.

Yet 2015 was still the safest year in aviation history. That year, 3.5 billion people flew safely on 37.6 million flights, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

A report last year by Allianz, a German insurance and asset management giant, said that taking a commercial flight is still the safest form of travel.

“The fatality rate per billion kilometers travelled by plane is 0.003 compared to 0.27 by rail and 2.57 by car,” the report noted.

“Statistically, you have more chance of being killed riding a bicycle or even by lightning.”

Here are two ways to make your own flights safer:

Sit at the back
Although all airlines sit First and Business class passengers the front, the cramped confines of economy class are statistically safer.

A study by Time magazine last year, which analyzed US Federal Aviation Administration records, showed that the middle seats in the rear of an aircraft historically have the highest survival rates.

Fly Qantas
Qantas, which has a fleet of 131 jets and flies to 85 destinations, has an “extraordinary” safety record with no recorded fatalities since jet travel began, according to AirlineRatings.com.

Australia’s flagship topped the site’s list of 407 airlines it checks for safety for the third year in a row.

American Airlines, Air New Zealand, Emirates, and Lufthansa were also highly-ranked on the list.

EgyptAir, meanwhile, has a lower safety ranking. In 2010, online news outlet BusinessInsider ranked the Egyptian flagship carrier as the ninth worst airline in the world.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:47 - GMT 06:47
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