2015 is safest year in aviation – Statistics

2015 is safest year in aviation – Statistics
Data from the Aviation Safety Network reveal that there are less aviation mishaps in the world in 2015 compared to past years

MANILA, Philippines – Just like in previous years, 2015 is not spared from some high-profile aviation tragedies.

Among the plane accidents reported this year are the Hercules C-130 transport plane crash in Indonesia, the Russian airliner accident in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, and a crash in South Sudan just right after the plane took off. (READ: World’s deadliest aviation disasters)

But despite these reports, aviation in 2015 – with only a few days remaining – is safer compared to past years.

Statistics reveal that there are less plane mishaps in 2015. For one, the preliminary report of the Aviation Safety Network (ASN) reveals that as of December 26, this year has recorded only 16 fatal aviation accidents – the lowest since 1942.

The ASN is a private initiative that “covers accidents and safety issues with regards to airliners, military transport planes, and corporate jets,” according to its website.

Out of this 16 accidents, only 7 are passenger flights.

Number of aviation accidents, 1942-2015
  Year Total number of accidents Number of accidents w/ passenger flights
Top 5 1948 94 60
1947 81 53
1970 80 47
1979 78 41
1972 76 55
Bottom 5 2009 31 12
2013 29 15
2012 24 11
2014 21 8
2015 16 7

“Given the expected worldwide air traffic of 34,000,000 flights, the accident rate is one fatal passenger flight accident per 4,857,000 flights,” according to the ASN report.

In terms of fatalities, 2015 remains relatively safer as it has registered, so far, the 5th lowest figure since 1942.

Number of fatalities in aviation accidents, 1942-2015
  Year Total number of fatalities Number of fatalities in passenger flights
Top 5 1972 2513 2429
1985 2454 2391
1973 2322 2222
1974 2169 2066
1996 1969 1774
Bottom 5 2015 560 493
2004 543 483
2011 524 472
2012 476 396
2013 265 224

The same trend applies to the Philippine setting, as data from the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) reveals similar findings.

The database of CAAP – updated as of October 2015 – shows that there are less aviation accidents and incidents this year. 

  Number of accidents Number of incidents
2015 4 0
2014 17 5
2013 20 5
2012 11 3
2011 17 6
2010 7 18
2009 12 15
2008 15 11

The plane accidents recorded in the country in 2015 include the small plane carrying some Cabinet officials that skidded off the wet runway of Tacloban airport, and the Philippine Air Force trainer aircraft that crashed off the coast of Batangas, both in January.

“Since 1997 the average number of airliner accidents has shown a steady and persistent decline, for a great deal thanks to the continuing safety-driven efforts by international aviation organizations,” ASN president Harro Ranter explained. – Rappler.com

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