I guess we spoke too soon: a few weeks ago, we wrote about how 2017 was the safest year to fly in all of history after there was a record zero airliner crashes that resulted in fatalities. Unfortunately, at the time of this article, there were at least 3 fatal crashes in the first three months of the year...
On Sunday, February 11th, an Antonov An-48 airliner crashed shortly after takeoff in Moscow, killing 71 people
On Sunday, February 18th, an ATR-72 crashed about an hour after taking off from Tehran (Iran) airport, killing 66 people.
On March 11, 2018, a sightseeing helicopter crashed into the East River in Manhattan, New York City, killing 5 people. Two passengers were pronounced dead at the scene, and three others died at the hospital. The pilot was able to escape the helicopter following its crash.
Since the development of passenger aircraft, aviation safety standards have really helped to minimize the number of air disasters, but try as they may, air crashes will never fully disappear. Though airlines in the US have a stronger safety record today, I was really surprised by this recent article from Statista about which countries have the highest number of fatal aircraft accidents since World War II (1945). Interestingly enough, but logically so, the most flights lost since WWII happened in the United States with 821 lost flights due to crashes. Even though that seems like a lot, the loss-to-fleet size ratio needs to be considered here. If you have the most planes, the odds for crashes would be higher, however that 821 number is a tiny percentage of the overall size of the United States fleet.
Though it's not on the chart, aviation experts point out that the loss to fleet size ratio in Iran is the highest. This is said to be due to the impact of economics sanctions which keep Iranian airlines from modernizing their fleet. This just goes to show that sanctions, even in a place like Iran, can backfire and stall progress towards a safer aviation world.
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