AviationThere have been fewer accidents in the skies ever since Covid, but turboprop aircraft are a concern for IATA.

Relax, flying safely is all it's cracked out to be

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According to IATA, the jet fatality risk in 2021 was 0.04 per million sectors, an improvement over the 5-year average of 0.06.
According to IATA, the jet fatality risk in 2021 was 0.04 per million sectors, an improvement over the 5-year average of 0.06. Photo Credit: Gettyimages/WinnieVinzence

There was one side benefit of less crowded skies and vacant airport parking slots during Covid. Fewer accidents in the air and none on the ground.

For the first time in more than 15 years, there were no runway/taxiway excursion accidents. No planes bumping into each other; no aircraft wings saying "G’day, mate, but I was on the runway first," and no air traffic control bloopers.

Reassuringly, there was just one accident in 99 million flights in 2021, and IATA hopes it stays that way.

“The severe reduction in flight numbers last year compared to the 5-year average magnified the impact of each accident when we calculate rates.

“Yet, in the face of numerous operational challenges in 2021, the industry improved in several key safety metrics,” said IATA director general, Willie Walsh.

Walsh said areas of concern remain. Airlines based in sub-Saharan Africa experienced four accidents in 2021, all with turboprop aircraft, three of which resulted in 18 fatalities.

“It is clear that we have much work ahead of us to bring all regions and types of operations up to global levels of safety performance,” Walsh added.

Some figures for the record: There was one fatal accident involving jet aircraft last year and the jet fatality risk in 2021 was 0.04 per million sectors, an improvement over the 5-year average of 0.06.

If you were flying an IATA member airline in 2021, your fatality risk was 0.00. The overall fatality risk figure, including non-IATA member airlines, was 0.23.

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