According to aviation industry research, last year was the safest in history for commercial airliners with no passenger jet crashes. This year is a different story with several serious air disasters already which is unimaginably heartbreaking for the families involved.
These include a military plane which crashed shortly after take-off in Algeria last month, killing more than 250 people, one of the worst plane crashes in the north African country’s history, (the cause of the crash was unclear although the Russian-built Ilyushin Il-76 military transport planes have been plagued by air crashes).
A Saratov Airlines plane crashed near Moscow in February, killing 71 people, again with the cause of the crash remaining unclear.
A US-Bangla Airlines flight crashed in Kathmandu, in March, killing 51 people. Bearing in mind that there have been 27 fatal plane crashes in Nepal in the past three decades, this could be described as a “hot spot” for crashes.
On Friday, yet another tragic crash occurred. A Boeing 737-201 crashed a shortly after taking off from Havana on an internal flight to Holguin on the east of the island.
What Can We Take From These Accidents?
After an incredibly good run, with an extraordinary lack of crashes, we are once again reminded of the horrors of a plane crash. The plane in the Cuban crash was owned by the Mexican airline Aerolíneas Damojh and was nearly 40 years old. It is therefore possible that the crash was caused by an age-related maintenance issue, although at this stage, nobody knows the cause, and whether we will ever get a conclusive answer remains unclear.
What we can conclude is that air disasters remain rare and flying remains safe. Of course, nothing is 100% safe, but the odds are on your side when you step into a plane. There do appear to be certain areas of the world where airline disasters are more common than others. Russia and Nepal do not have the best safety record.
These disasters won’t stop me flying. They shouldn’t stop you flying either. Flying gets us to magical destinations that make us happy. I will be flying away this summer without hesitation (although flying in Nepal and Russia are no longer on my bucket list…).
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