According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which has just published its safety report, 2014 was one of the safest years in the history of aviation. Last year, out of 38 million flights, IATA’s figures indicate twelve fatal commercial aircraft accidents. A reduction, since for the previous five years, the average number of fatalities, per year, was 19.
Regarding casualties however, the 2014 figures are less encouraging. The Malaysia Airlines, Air Asia and Air Algeria crashes, amongst others, caused a total of 641 victims last year. This is three times more than the previous record year of 2013. The fact still remains that with over three billion passengers carried in 2014, the fatalities per number of passengers ratio was exceptionally low.
As proof, the global rate of jet aircraft accidents in 2014 was the lowest ever, representing one accident every 4.4 million flights ; but since any tragic accident is one too many, security remains the priority of the International Air Transport Association. Recent steps to establish a global tracking system for commercial aircraft, together with avoidance of overflying areas of conflict, should enable a further increase in the safety of the world’s, already, safest means of transport.
Finally, on a more gruesome note, IATA’s 2014 calculations, do not take into account flight MH17, shot down over Ukraine, since it is not considered an accident.