How to Improve Your Chances of Surviving a Plane Crash

By Jesse Sokolow on 10 February 2016
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A recent bus crash in New England led to a discussion about the survivability of plane crashes versus bus crashes. My friend was surprised to learn that the survival rate in U.S. plane crashes is an astounding 95% according to the National Transportation Safety Board based on figures from the period 1983 through 2000.

This stands in stark contrast to the 46% survival rate in the period 1962 through 1981.

The fatality rate per billion passenger-miles for buses is relatively low, 0.11. However, this figure is still 65% higher than the fatality rate for commercial aviation.

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The increase in the airplane crash survival rate is due to improved flame retardant fabrics and parts, stronger seats, and better firefighting techniques after a crash, all of which come together to increase the amount of time passengers have to make a safe escape.

A look at some major crashes in the past decade shows how, with one exception, it’s possible for all passengers and crew to walk away from a crash:

  • Asiana Airlines Flight 214 in 2013: 305 of 307 survived
  • Lion Air Flight 904 in 2013: All 108 on board survived
  • Caribbean Airlines Flight 523 in 2011: All 163 on board survived
  • American Airlines Flight 331 in 2009: All 154 on board survived
  • US Airways Flight 1549 (“Miracle on the Hudson”) in 2009: All 155 on board survived

It’s unlikely you’ll ever be in a crash, but just in case, here are nine tips on how to be prepared.

Click here to continue to Page 29 Tips to Increase Chances of Surviving a Crash

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