Plane Accident Fatalities Increased in 2020 Despite Pandemic
U.S. - The number of people slain in commercial airplane accidents grew in 2020 to 299 worldwide even though there was a significant drop in flights due to COVID-19, according to a Dutch consulting firm's research.
Last year, there were 40 accidents that involved commercial passenger planes. Of those, 5 plane accidents were fatal and tragically killed 299 people. In 2019, there were roughly two times as many large commercial plane accidents, 86 accidents. Of these accidents, 8 were fatal, causing 257 fatalities.
The study reported large commercial jets had 0.27 fatal airplane crashes per million flights in 2020, which means there was one fatal accident every 3.7 million flights. This is up by 0.18 fatal commercial airplane crashes per million flights in 2019.
The study reported that it tracked commercial flights worldwide in 2020 and discovered the number of flights fell by 42%, to 24.4 million. Airlines were forced to cut the number of flights they offered as the pandemic spread, resulting in governments closing of airports worldwide.
More than half of all fatalities in the review were due to one military accident and a mechanical issue. The first incident was the Ukrainian jetliner that was shot down over Iran and killed 176 people in January 2020. The second most fatal incident was the Pakistan airplane accident in May that killed 98 people.
Over the past twenty years, the number of annual aviation fatalities has dropped off significantly. For example, the Aviation Safety Network (ASN) reported that there was 1,015 aviation death in 2005 on commercial passenger flights worldwide. However, the average number of annual aviation deaths has been 245 deaths per year over the past five years.
The safest year in recent years was 2017, when only two fatal aviation accidents occurred, tragically killing thirteen occupants. In 2017, there were no fatal accidents involving commercial passenger jets.
The United States has not endured a deadly U.S. passenger airline accident since February 2009, and there was one passenger death that year.
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