Up to forty per cent of Australians admit to feeling nervous when flying. While some suffer from aviophobia, many of us are simply frightened by sensationalist headlines and Hollywood movies. The truth is, flying is actually the safest mode of transportation. In this blog, we cover some facts that will help your future journeys go smoother.
Turbulence won’t bring the plane down
Commercial airlines are designed to withstand turbulence. They can’t be flipped upside down or thrown into a tailspin no matter how powerful the gust of wind. Pilots consider turbulence a nuisance, not a safety risk. Consider it like driving down a bumpy road. The only reason the seatbelt like comes on during turbulence is to keep you in your seat and prevent injury.
Neither will an engine failure
Believe it or not, commercial airplanes can still comfortably remain airborne with only one working engine and can still land safely if both fail. You might not make it all the way to your destination without an impromptu stop, but you also don’t need to spend your entire flight listening carefully for any strange engine sounds.
Airplanes are rigorously tested
Just like your car, all airplanes are rigorously tested prior to commercial use. They’re also regularly serviced – probably more frequently than your car – to ensure that everything is in working order. Some of the tests they undergo include:
- Wing flexibility testing
- Ingestion testing (imagine a bird hitting one of the engines)
- Temperature and altitude testing
- Velocity minimum unstick testing (the minimum speed needed to take off)
- Brake testing
Driving a car is more dangerous
More than 100 car crash fatalities occur in Australia every month and the same number of injuries occur every day. Our government release road safety campaigns every year to help combat this number, but have you noticed there are none for air travel? That’s because the odds of dying in a plane crash are one in 11 million.
Flying is becoming safer every year
The air travel industry has been under scrutiny since the incidents with Malaysia Airlines in 2014, leading to stricter regulation. Couple this with advances in technology and airplane materials and you’ll find the commercial travel is becoming safer every year. In fact, the Wall Street Journal reported that 2017 was the safest year in aviation history, with zero fatalities resulting from jet crash occurring worldwide.