How Safe is Flying?

Skintaster

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Really? I don't particularly like to fly, but it's still something I have to do from time to time.

I realize that statistically, commercial flights are very safe, but disasters still happen.

I guess what freaks me out is that you're putting your safety completely in the hands of a bunch of other people. How safe is that chain of command? What backups keep say, and inattentive mechanic from making a serious problem?

Anyway, I know there are a few professional pilots here, so just how safe are commercial flights in the western world? I know that there have been recent issues with expecting pilots to work really long hours.
 

stinkfoot

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I just saw a show the other day that covered that.. If I can remember correctly the chances of dying on a commercial airline flight was 1 in 11 million, compared to 1 in 88 for driving in an automobile.
 

LPG

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Really? I don't particularly like to fly, but it's still something I have to do from time to time.

I realize that statistically, commercial flights are very safe, but disasters still happen.

I guess what freaks me out is that you're putting your safety completely in the hands of a bunch of other people. How safe is that chain of command? What backups keep say, and inattentive mechanic from making a serious problem?

Anyway, I know there are a few professional pilots here, so just how safe are commercial flights in the western world? I know that there have been recent issues with expecting pilots to work really long hours.

You know what Skin?

There are some things in life that I just can't let worry me.
Flying is one of them.

You are right.
Your fate is in the hands of other people...completely.
So there is NOTHING you can do about it.

So short of getting your own pilots license.....?

JMHO:)
 

Publius pro tem

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There were ZERO deaths on a commercial air carrier in 2010.

Personally, I hate commercial flying with a passion due to the TSA bullsh!t and customer service.

I'm a private pilot - I'd rather fly the "dangerous" small ones any day.


.
 

LongBeach

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I just dont worry about it.
And, so far, havent figured out how to drive to Hawaii :hmm: :laugh2:

Seriously, I fly quite often, and, just something I dont feel
the need to worry about. I figure if I had to drive (lets say the 2000 miles from LA to Mo.) I'd have a better chance getting into a car accident.

But, I'd also have a hell of alot better chance surviving the car accident :shock:

shit..thanks alot :laugh2::laugh2:
 

MenaceMartin

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I'm not a pilot (simulators? yes), but i've been watching these in-depth documentaries for years, and thanks to my interests in engineering, i also know a lot about how the general commercial jet works.

Most of the time, fear of flying is usually down to lack of understanding of how an aircraft actually performs. Aircraft are built to 'want' to fly. A single failure, however serious, will never bring down an aircraft in a way that can't be done safely.

Disasters that you hear about are always down to a series of simultaneous failures, which, rest-assured, are always investigated, and corrected in all aircraft, no matter how little the issue may be.

Most people hate the idea of turbulence... me on the other hand, i quite like it. It's quite fun actually... because i know that turbulence will never do any harm.

The last i heard, the problem with the long shifts was currently being looked at, and i think some rules were being put in place. It was after the crash of Colgan Flight 3407 that exhaustion was deemed a problem.
 

Skintaster

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Thanks guys. I' actually not "afraid" to fly, as I know that modern aircraft are engineered for safety... I still have to argue that with the irrational side of my brain whenever I fly though. :)

Can't modern jetliners basically land themselves without a pilot? I thought I saw that on an episode of Mythbusters. :)
 

lucidspoon

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What backups keep say, and inattentive mechanic from making a serious problem?
The software I write makes sure inattentive mechanics don't work on the plane. ;) But right now, it's mostly only used by mechanics working on planes that are still being built.

Personally, I hate commercial flying with a passion due to the TSA bullsh!t and customer service.

I'm a private pilot - I'd rather fly the "dangerous" small ones any day.
THIS! Though I'm not a pilot, and my reason for hating commercial flying is more about all the people and the waiting. Flying a Diamond DA-40 is a lot more fun and comfortable than riding in a 747 or something!
 

MenaceMartin

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Thanks guys. I' actually not "afraid" to fly, as I know that modern aircraft are engineered for safety... I still have to argue that with the irrational side of my brain whenever I fly though. :)

Can't modern jetliners basically land themselves without a pilot? I thought I saw that on an episode of Mythbusters. :)
I think the episode you might have seen was the one where they were guided to land the plane via radio by an experienced pilot on the ground? They did prove that an inexperienced pilot, say, a passenger, can land a plane if physically capable, and was spoken/guided through the radio.

We're quite a long shot away from planes landing themselves yet. We're only just beginning to see car's driving themselves!
 

Rich

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It's gotta be safer than a cab ride through Manhattan at rush hour.
 

PraXis

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It's a control thing with me. I know driving is more dangerous, but it's ME driving. With a plane/train/whatever, you have zero control.

I found I keep more calm on flights when I take a look at the stewardesses every now and then.. it's like Carlin said.. you don't need to panic until they do.
 

BillB1960

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I've flown more than a million actual flight miles according to my best calculations and while I've had some rather nerve-wracking experiences over more than 30 years including running out of fuel in a commercial jet airliner and an aborted takeoff that nearly ended up in San Francisco Bay, I've never had a true accident or had to evacuate an aircraft.

I've always flown under the assumption that the pilots want to get home safely just as much or more than I do so as long as it's not the pilot's 'time to go' it's not going to be mine either.
 

Sinster

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The last i heard, the problem with the long shifts was currently being looked at, and i think some rules were being put in place. It was after the crash of Colgan Flight 3407 that exhaustion was deemed a problem.

Poor pilots working long shifts. What about the people actually working on the aircraft. Going on the two weeks of working 12-14 hours a day. Having their spouse ride their ass, missing the kids functions, and other stuff. Everybody forgot about those in the trenches. Yes I want an mentally alert pilot. I also went a mentally alert technician installing flight controls or any other critical for flight component, instead of being tired and stress from home installing those components.

http://www.faa.gov/data_research/accident_incident/preliminary_data/ <------ Crashes by day.

http://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/reports_aviation.html
 

Skintaster

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Poor pilots working long shifts. What about the people actually working on the aircraft. Going on the two weeks of working 12-14 hours a day. Having their spouse ride their ass, missing the kids functions, and other stuff. Everybody forgot about those in the trenches. Yes I want an mentally alert pilot. I also went a mentally alert technician installing flight controls or any other critical for flight component, instead of being tired and stress from home installing those components.

Personally, I want both. :)
 

River side

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If it's done right, there's little safety risk with flying.

If it's done right.

I learned to fly when I was 16 - but never wanted to pursue it as I was more than a little freaked out about what "doing it right" entails.

That's why I don't mind paying the price for a ticket on a commercial carrier.

But I"m not likely to run out to the GA field on a weekend to try and hook up a joyride with someone I've never even met.
 

JMV

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I hope it's pretty safe....I'm flying to Colorado tomorrow morning. :run:
 

River side

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Poor pilots working long shifts. What about the people actually working on the aircraft. Going on the two weeks of working 12-14 hours a day. Having their spouse ride their ass, missing the kids functions, and other stuff. Everybody forgot about those in the trenches. Yes I want an mentally alert pilot. I also went a mentally alert technician installing flight controls or any other critical for flight component, instead of being tired and stress from home installing those components.

If you want to have some really good fun, check out the shop rates for those kind of businesses and compare it to what an RV dealer thinks working on your treehouse-on-wheels should be worth...
 

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