Regardless of today’s technological advances, safety measures, inspections and protocols flying is dangerous. No matter how often you board an aircraft, passengers always want peace of mind that they will land safely at their destination. Most travelers don’t mind waiting for a delayed flight when parts are being fixed on a plane and I’m sure most are thankful for that (I know I am!)
While most mainstream airlines can all be considered “safe” and up to flying laws and standards, each year AirlineRatings.com, a safety and product rating website, rates airlines based on a variety of factors including an airline’s fatality record, operational history, incident and inspection reports from aviation governing bodies, independent organizations, and the government.
After evaluating 407 carriers, the site recently announced their top 20 safest airlines and their 10 safest low-cost airlines. Number one for the third year in a row is Qantas, the Australian national carrier that boasts an astonishing fatality-free record in its “jet set” era. In addition to its safety record, the 95-year-old airline has been a pioneer in more ways than one: think the implementation of flight data recorders to help monitor plane, cabin, and crew; automatic landings; and engine monitoring using satellite communications.
Of the 407 airlines surveyed, 148 have the top seven-star safety ranking. Rounding out the top 20, in alphabetical order, are American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, All Nippon Airways, Air New Zealand; Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates, Etihad Airways, EVA Air, Finnair, Hawaiian Airlines, Japan Airlines, KLM, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airline System (SAS), Singapore Airlines, Swiss, United Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, and Virgin Australia.
The site also ranked low-cost options that have excellent safety records and passed the International Air Transport Association Operational Safety Audit (IOSA). In alphabetical order, they are Aer Lingus, Flybe, HK Express, JetBlue, Jetstar Australia, Thomas Cook, TUI Fly, Virgin America, Volaris, and Westjet.
Some airliners that didn’t fare so well in the ratings with one star are: Batik Air, Blue Wing Airlines, Citilink, Kalstar, Lion Air, Sriwijaya Air, TransNusa, Trigana Air Service, Wings Air, and Xpress Air.
The good news is that according to Data from Aviation-Safety.net shows 16 air accidents with 560 fatalities; well below the 10-year average and an improvement on 2014, when there were 21 fatal accidents and 986 fatalities.
It’s important to make an informed decision on an airline carrier for a number of reasons, safety being the first. It is essential that we all keep traveling but of course keep an open eye to things around the aircraft that may look unsafe. We urge you to keep travelling and to be an educated consumer when doing so.
Please visit http://www.airlineratings.com/news/630/who-is-the-worlds-safest-airline-for-2016 for more information on this assessment.