Supremacy of the skies

Flight safety - Supremacy of the skies

What is the most dangerous part of a plane journey? The drive to the airport. In purely statistical terms, people can give in to the freedom of traveling above the clouds relatively care-free. If you really want to play it safe, take the train to the airport.

0,7 people per 100 million passenger kilometres traveled die in car accidents in the European Union. At 0.25, the risk for ferries is a lot lower, and planes and trains share top ranking as the safest forms of transport at 0.035. So, in terms of kilometers travelled, the risk of dying in a traffic accident is 20 times higher than the risk of dying in a plane crash. Expressed in absolute numbers, the difference is much clearer: The German Aviation Association (BDL) recorded 325 deaths for civilian air travel in 2016 – worldwide.

Accident risk falls

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) estimates that 1.2 million people were fatally injured in traffic accidents over the same period. The number of air travelers is increasing but the risk of an accident is falling. Airlines carried around 3.7 billion passengers last year – nearly twelve times the number in 1970. But the statistical probability of a fatal accident was 50 times higher back then than it is today. The skies of Europe and North America are currently the safest, most accidents occur in Africa, parts of Asia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

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Picture Credits: © Anton Gvozdikov /