Should We Be Afraid of Flying?
Well, the bad news is that 2010 saw 828 people die in air crashes. That's a wee bit more than two a day, and a scary 13 per cent more than in 2009. And what's the good news, you anxiously ask, whilst Googling "vacation +steamboat"? If you look at the stats over the past decade, they show 100 fewer fatal accidents than in the 1990s, that's 10 less than that decade.
And really, you need to look at the big picture: the fatal accident rate may have gone up, but it's still one in 1.3 million flights taken. So, if you flew to work and back every day, you'd be on course for a crash around the year 3790AD.
The stats come from the Ascend consultancy, which produced the figures for the avation industry, and are covered in The Guardian. They show that flights in India, Pakistan and the Middle East accounted for more than 60 per cent of those figures, the worst being the Air India Boeing 737-800 which overran afer landing in Mangalore, killing 158 crew and passengers in May.
Aircraft insurance claims in 2010 reached $1,1bn.
The video above, to cheer us all up, is the happy emergency landing in the campiest of airline movies, Airport, and yes, that is a slightly chub Dean Martin looking embarrassed in the cockpit.