Travelling via aircraft

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#1 Posted by Emil_Fontz (274 posts) -

I've never traveled via aircraft before, and though I'd like to know what it feels like to be thousands of feet in the sky, I don't want to. Even though it's said to be the safest way to travel, or so I've been told, the very nature of traveling via aircraft frightens me. At least if you're in a land or marine vehicle during an accident, you can walk or swim to safety if the accident isn't too bad. However, if you're on an aircraft during an accident, the result is almost always fatal because the aircraft can go in only one direction: down.

How do you guys feel about traveling via aircraft?

#2 Edited by GTR12 (9558 posts) -

Been doing it for 23 yrs and I'm 24, so I'm fine with it.

#3 Posted by Emil_Fontz (274 posts) -

@GTR12 said:

Been doing it for 23 yrs and I'm 24, so I'm fine with it.

Have you ever experienced turbulence or non-catastrophic engine failure?

#4 Posted by dave123321 (34076 posts) -

You can go down at an angle

#5 Edited by SaintLeonidas (26278 posts) -

You are more likely to die driving to the airport than to die in a plane crash. Hell, you are more likely to die falling while getting out of bed the morning of a flight than you are of dying in a plane crash. Lately, you are probably more likely to get shot while waiting for your flight. So I do not understand why anyone would worry or fear air travel when it is ultimately statistically one of the safer things you would be doing when traveling.

#6 Posted by dave123321 (34076 posts) -

Hey peeps, can anyone find the fatality rate of aircraft accidents?

#7 Edited by Emil_Fontz (274 posts) -

@dave123321 said:

Hey peeps, can anyone find the fatality rate of aircraft accidents?

Odds of being killed on a single airline flight1 in 29.4 million
Number of fatalities per million flight hours12.25
Survival rate of passengers on a fatal crash24 %
Fatalities by Phase of Flight
Taxi, load/unload, parked, tow0 %
Takeoff16 %
Initial Climb14 %
Climb (flaps up)13 %
Cruise16 %
Descent4 %
Initial Approach12 %
Final Approach13 %
Landing12 %

Because the survival rate of passengers on a fatal crash is 24%, the fatality rate is 76%.

Source.

#8 Posted by dave123321 (34076 posts) -

Good odds

#9 Posted by Emil_Fontz (274 posts) -

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

#10 Posted by turtlethetaffer (16767 posts) -

It's not something I particularly enjoy but I don't despise it either. It makes me nervous sometimes though.

#11 Posted by dave123321 (34076 posts) -

@emil_fontz: my friend, I live and breath stats and u can assure you that the picture is happier then you realize

#12 Edited by lamprey263 (23965 posts) -

I have more strong feelings about flying then it's about the price of flying, TSA screening, no smoking room access beyond TSA checkpoints in many airports, lack of amenities and such. American based carriers are horrible for overcharging and nickle-and-diming passengers for everything.

If you ever get a chance, don't hesitate to fly something like Asiana. Took it to Korea on a hop over to Vietnam and the amenities were considerably much more than anything I've ever received from an American carrier. They feed you, a lot, and are always bringing you snacks and drinks free of charge. The stewardesses are cute and hospitable. Headphones for inflight entertainment are free. Instead of one movie everybody watches each seat has a screen built into the seat in front of it with a selection of several dozen movies and TV shows to watch on flight, again free. It makes that 13 hour flight much more manageable and quick and comfortable. They even give you a travel bag with a tooth brush, toothpaste, slippers, and an eye cover. And, when I was in Korea for a few hours waiting for my connecting flight, they gave me vouchers for the airport food court to eat while I was waiting for my connecting flight. And they don't charge you for checking your luggage in like American carriers. Let's be clear, no American carrier would do anything like this ever without charging you up the ass for it. My round trip ticket only cost like $600 too. You can barely fly coast to coast in the US on that in a good day, let alone get any of those amenities.

If they ever decided to serve domestic US routes they'd murder the rest of the US carriers in a matter of months.

#13 Posted by GTR12 (9558 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

@GTR12 said:

Been doing it for 23 yrs and I'm 24, so I'm fine with it.

Have you ever experienced turbulence or non-catastrophic engine failure?

Yes to both questions, turbulence on numerous occasions and engine failure once, it isn't really scary, it actually gets really quiet when a engine shuts off.

Also, an engine failure isn't a catastrophe always, planes are designed to still fly with the remaining engine(s), and the plane doesn't just fall out of the sky either, it just becomes a giant glider.

#14 Posted by br0kenrabbit (12988 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

I've never traveled via aircraft before, and though I'd like to know what it feels like to be thousands of feet in the sky, I don't want to. Even though it's said to be the safest way to travel, or so I've been told, the very nature of traveling via aircraft frightens me. At least if you're in a land or marine vehicle during an accident, you can walk or swim to safety if the accident isn't too bad. However, if you're on an aircraft during an accident, the result is almost always fatal because the aircraft can go in only one direction: down.

How do you guys feel about traveling via aircraft?

Most air crashes are survivable. It's only the nasty ones that makes headlines.

As a private pilot I've experienced some engine emergencies before, but as long as the airframe, pressurization, control surfaces and hydraulics are intact you can put the plane down safely. Even a large jumbo jet can glide for a hundred miles or more (depending on altitude) without engine power.

There's nothing quite like the feeling of flight, I'm quite addicted.

#15 Posted by wis3boi (31382 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

you cherry picked the odds of survival of a crash, not the odds of the crash happening at all. You're more likely to win the lottery or get hit by space debris probably

#16 Posted by MrGeezer (56371 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

The rare outliers skew the results. Most "fatal accidents" involve survivors. But then you have the incredibly rare cases where all of the 300 or so people on board die, and that skews the numbers towards the 76%. In reality, if a "fatal accident" occurs, it's more likely to be one of the ones in which most people survive than one of the ones in which everyone dies horribly. As long as you're not on one of the "everyone dies" flights, you'll probably survive even a "fatal accident". And the odds of an "everyone dies" type of scenario happening is incredibly slim.

#17 Posted by MirkoS77 (7503 posts) -

Everyone can throw safety statistics my way until they're blue in the face, but the fact remains....

....it's the manner of death which is what makes me dread air travel. I've been in (minor) car accidents before. They are usually always over before I have any time to even know what is going on. It's like getting accidentally cut. By the time the pain is known and the cut is made, it's over so it's really not all that bad. A plane crash is different (unless it's something like an explosive decompression). Odds are, if they are NOT in your favor on that particular flight, you are more than likely going to have a significant amount of time to ponder your death and the manner of it. Like in JAL flight 123, where the rear bulkhead gave out, severing the hydraulics which caused the plane to climb and dive in a phugoid cycle at 45 degree angles for more than 30 minutes, allowing many to write death notes to their loved ones.

Fuck that music. Can you even imagine the horror in the cabin during this time? People must've been going insane. Puking, shitting their pants, just hell on Earth. I don't care if my chances are astronomically low for this to happen, I don't want to die like that. I don't want to be in a situation where I have apt time to acknowledge my death on such short and drastic notice. No thanks. I step on airplanes only as much as is absolutely necessary.

Sorry TC, I know this probably isn't helping.

#18 Posted by magicalclick (22693 posts) -

If you are lucky, it is a quick death. If it sadly successfully landed on water. You were going to drown, if warm, eaten by shark, if cold, well watch Titanic, if you see land, well is Cast Away or Lost. Of course, the later part are all description of shipwreck which as all slow death instead of merciful quick death.

#19 Posted by FelipeInside (25585 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

I've never traveled via aircraft before, and though I'd like to know what it feels like to be thousands of feet in the sky, I don't want to. Even though it's said to be the safest way to travel, or so I've been told, the very nature of traveling via aircraft frightens me. At least if you're in a land or marine vehicle during an accident, you can walk or swim to safety if the accident isn't too bad. However, if you're on an aircraft during an accident, the result is almost always fatal because the aircraft can go in only one direction: down.

How do you guys feel about traveling via aircraft?

You do realize there's more chance (statistically speaking) of you dying driving your car down the road then flying on a plane right?

#20 Posted by thehig1 (2047 posts) -

@MirkoS77: that's why I feel the same as you, and take the statistics with a pinch of salt.

I will only fly when absolutely nessecery

#21 Posted by SolidSnake35 (58109 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

Great, so we'll hook you up in our new aircraft. Although it experiences an accident every one in two flights, it has a 75% chance of landing safely following these accidents. Enjoy.

#22 Edited by Korvus (3847 posts) -

While I don't necessary enjoy flying, it's not out of fear, but because the seats are normally cramped unless you pay extra (I mean XL space, not 1st class...1st class is too expensive to do on a regular basis) and that recycled air flares up my allergies about half the time. Also, long flights are boring as all hell....you read a book, listen to your entire mp3 collection, take a nap, wake up and you still have 3/4 of the trip to go...very annoying.

Other than that, turbulence/air pockets are not really all that uncommon but after the first dip, you don't even care anymore...most people won't even lift their eyes from their newspapers when it happens. Never had an engine failure but I've been in a rough landing because of extreme wind that almost threw the plane out of the tracks (again, nobody panicked, and everybody kept reading their magazines/books). I always feel very safe in an airplane, everything is smooth, you don't really feel anything while you're up there (it feels like you're stopped) and unless you book the seat next to the engines it's quite peaceful.

Not to mention the view is amazing...if there are no clouds you can see everything, and if you're really lucky and the clouds are dense it's like hills and valleys made of clouds. Once I was flying when the sun begun to set and the clouds were golden as far as the eye could see (it looked like Scrooge McDuck's vault =P) One of the most beautiful things I've ever seen.

Last time I flew there were no clouds, but it was still nice; here are a couple of photos (nothing I could do about the dirty window XD)

#23 Posted by jun_aka_pekto (16152 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

I've never traveled via aircraft before, and though I'd like to know what it feels like to be thousands of feet in the sky, I don't want to. Even though it's said to be the safest way to travel, or so I've been told, the very nature of traveling via aircraft frightens me. At least if you're in a land or marine vehicle during an accident, you can walk or swim to safety if the accident isn't too bad. However, if you're on an aircraft during an accident, the result is almost always fatal because the aircraft can go in only one direction: down.

How do you guys feel about traveling via aircraft?

I've done a lot of traveling by air. It's noisy even through ear plugs. It's inconvenient to use the can if you don't have an aisle seat and there are long waits soon after meals. I usually ate just the bare minimum to minimize having to use the toilet. The constant engine whine can get to your nerves if you're on a long flight. If you travel to Japan and Southeast Asia like I do, there's always moderate turbulence on the northern leg of the flight. Sometimes, the turbulence is strong enough to knock open the overhead bins. I got used to it.

I don't mind traveling by air. If it's my time to die then it's my time. If I don't die from a plane crash then I'd probably die from something else. I've already had a number of close calls on the streets and freeways when I was single, mostly through my own stupidity. I'm much less reckless after I got married. But, I still had a few close calls. A good example is after one trip to Japan, I got used to driving on the left hand side. Once I got back home to the US, my situational awareness was still geared for driving on the left lane even though we normally drove on the right lane. I almost got into a head-on crash. Good thing the wife screamed and grabbed the wheel, forcing me to slam the brakes. No harm. No damage. But, too close for comfort.

#24 Posted by Emil_Fontz (274 posts) -

@MirkoS77 said:

Everyone can throw safety statistics my way until they're blue in the face, but the fact remains....

....it's the manner of death which is what makes me dread air travel. I've been in (minor) car accidents before. They are usually always over before I have any time to even know what is going on. It's like getting accidentally cut. By the time the pain is known and the cut is made, it's over so it's really not all that bad. A plane crash is different (unless it's something like an explosive decompression). Odds are, if they are NOT in your favor on that particular flight, you are more than likely going to have a significant amount of time to ponder your death and the manner of it. Like in JAL flight 123, where the rear bulkhead gave out, severing the hydraulics which caused the plane to climb and dive in a phugoid cycle at 45 degree angles for more than 30 minutes, allowing many to write death notes to their loved ones.

Fuck that music. Can you even imagine the horror in the cabin during this time? People must've been going insane. Puking, shitting their pants, just hell on Earth. I don't care if my chances are astronomically low for this to happen, I don't want to die like that. I don't want to be in a situation where I have apt time to acknowledge my death on such short and drastic notice. No thanks. I step on airplanes only as much as is absolutely necessary.

Sorry TC, I know this probably isn't helping.

I couldn't agree more.

#25 Posted by Korvus (3847 posts) -

@jun_aka_pekto said:

If I don't die from a plane crash then I'd probably die from something else.

Eventually dying from something or another seems like a safe bet =P

#26 Posted by Wilfred_Owen (20860 posts) -

Those leaks. There always within limits as I say with a wink to my supervisor while air crew asks me about it.

#27 Posted by thegerg (15270 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

"we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure"

Oh silly, ignorant Bluray. That's simply not the case.

#28 Edited by BranKetra (48625 posts) -

I believe all commercial airplanes should include a parachute for every passenger as a standard.

#29 Edited by bforrester420 (1604 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

Where did you get that information? Turbulence and engine failure aren't "non-fatal" accidents. You'll find a lot of incidents where a plane has an accident upon takeoff or landing and nobody dies. Take US Air flight 1549 for example (crash landed in NYC's Hudson river after losing engine power hitting a goose). All 155 passengers survived. That's a non-fatal accident.

#30 Posted by themajormayor (25796 posts) -

How can you not have traveled via aircraft before?

#31 Posted by yokofox33 (29704 posts) -

Air travel and planes in general terrify me. I mean I'll fly if I have to, but I'm a nervous wreck the entire time. It's not the fear of crashing that scares me, it's the thought of knowing I'm going to die that really drives me mad. Any little bump or turbulence and my heart goes crazy. I've taken multiple 14-15 hours flights and was wide awake the entire time for each of them, and that's even after taking sedatives to calm me down and help me sleep. I just can't sleep or relax on a plane at all.

#32 Posted by LZ71 (10279 posts) -

If I could I would say fuck this college noise and try to become a pilot.

so yes, I like flying.

#33 Posted by foxhound_fox (88415 posts) -

Here is something to ease your mind:

  • Chance of being killed in car crash: 1 in 67
  • Chance of being killed in plane crash: 1 in 11,000,000

If you are afraid of flying, you should be absolutely mortified to drive a car.

#34 Edited by Aljosa23 (24986 posts) -

@themajormayor said:

How can you not have traveled via aircraft before?

Most Americans never leave their state let alone their country, so it makes sense.

#35 Edited by Emil_Fontz (274 posts) -

@foxhound_fox said:

Here is something to ease your mind:

  • Chance of being killed in car crash: 1 in 67
  • Chance of being killed in plane crash: 1 in 11,000,000

If you are afraid of flying, you should be absolutely mortified to drive a car.

One in sixty seven? GTFO! (Joking, of course).

#36 Posted by foxhound_fox (88415 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

One in sixty seven? GTFO!

Mean probability during the year the numbers were taken was 1.49% (US National Safety Council).

Here are the top-10 leading causes of death according to the World Health Organization:

  • 12.6% Ischaemic heart disease
  • 9.7% Cerebrovascular disease
  • 6.8% Lower respiratory infections
  • 4.9% HIV/AIDS
  • 4.8% Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • 3.2% Diarrhoeal diseases
  • 2.7% Tuberculosis
  • 2.2% Malaria
  • 2.2% Trachea/bronchus/lung cancers
  • 2.1% Road traffic accidents (this is 1 in 50)

People aren't lying when they say traveling by plane is the safest way to travel.

Another fun stat:

  • Chance of dying in an airplane crash if you fly one round trip from coast to coast every week for 40 years: 1 in 200 (0.5%)

#37 Edited by themajormayor (25796 posts) -

@Aljosa23 said:

@themajormayor said:

How can you not have traveled via aircraft before?

Most Americans never leave their state let alone their country, so it makes sense.

lol

#38 Edited by jun_aka_pekto (16152 posts) -

@Aljosa23 said:

@themajormayor said:

How can you not have traveled via aircraft before?

Most Americans never leave their state let alone their country, so it makes sense.

Feh. That's true for most Canadians as well. Hell, I've been to many places in Europe and Southeast Asia where many locals never even left their towns. Japan, South Korea.....same thing.

At least we're doing a road trip next month. going from NY to AZ. Each way is the the equivalent of driving from London to Nizhny Volgorod (somewhere east of Moscow) in Russia.

#39 Posted by thegerg (15270 posts) -

@Aljosa23 said:

@themajormayor said:

How can you not have traveled via aircraft before?

Most Americans never leave their state let alone their country, so it makes sense.

Where did you hear that?

#40 Posted by thegerg (15270 posts) -

@bforrester420 said:

@emil_fontz said:

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

Where did you get that information? Turbulence and engine failure aren't "non-fatal" accidents. You'll find a lot of incidents where a plane has an accident upon takeoff or landing and nobody dies. Take US Air flight 1549 for example (crash landed in NYC's Hudson river after losing engine power hitting a goose). All 155 passengers survived. That's a non-fatal accident.

This guy isn't the type to let facts and reality get in the way of his thoughts and opinions.

#41 Posted by jasean79 (2374 posts) -

I'm not a fan of flying, but it's almost necessary if you want to go anywhere without wasting hours driving to get there, so I'll do it. I'm not a fan of traveling generally speaking, so it's rare that I ever fly. But it doesn't fear me like Final Destination shit or anything.

#42 Posted by thegerg (15270 posts) -

@BranKetra said:

I believe all commercial airplanes should include a parachute for every passenger as a standard.

There are probably better ways to invest that money than on parachutes. The thing about a parachute is that in order for it to work the user has to be given a decent amount of time and a window of opportunity to use it. In the great majority of fatal air accidents that time and opportunity simply doesn't exist, the aircraft is too close to the ground and/or the pilots have (for whatever reason) lost control of the aircraft. If a pilot can control the aircraft in a manner which would allow passengers to strap up a parachute and exit the aircraft in a survivable manner, then that pilot should focus on controlling that plane into a landing. Not to mention the fact that space and weight are already at a premium on commercial aircraft. On top of that the majority of people on commercial flights don't have the training to use or even put on a parachute. We would also have to consider the maintenance requirements of parachutes.

#43 Edited by BranKetra (48625 posts) -

@thegerg: I am not in any position to authorize that and the following changes, but I can at least say with confidence that their inclusion into air travel policy could save lives.

I also believe upgraded planes capable of greater stabilization would be good. Such improvements would be complemented by the parachutes. Parachute training being mandatory for all capable flyers is a necessity as well, of course.

#44 Posted by always_explicit (2906 posts) -

Meh plummeting into the sea in a fireball sounds better than a slow descent into incontinence, arthritis and forgetting who my kids are.

#45 Posted by The_Last_Ride (71845 posts) -

@emil_fontz: i am afraid of heights and don't really like it, but i have gotten used to it

#46 Posted by Emil_Fontz (274 posts) -

@bforrester420 said:

@emil_fontz said:

@dave123321 said:

Good odds

Those are horrible odds. You have a 76% chance of dying if there's an accident. I know that the chart says "fatal accidents," but we all know that non-fatal "accidents" are mere turbulence and non-catastrophic engine failure, so they aren't really accidents and don't count. Having said that, I acknowledge that the overall odds of dying are slim because accidents are so rare, but to me what's important are the odds of surviving in the case of an accident.

Where did you get that information? Turbulence and engine failure aren't "non-fatal" accidents. You'll find a lot of incidents where a plane has an accident upon takeoff or landing and nobody dies. Take US Air flight 1549 for example (crash landed in NYC's Hudson river after losing engine power hitting a goose). All 155 passengers survived. That's a non-fatal accident.

I'm not going to lie; it was a rash assumption.

#47 Posted by vl4d_l3nin (970 posts) -

@emil_fontz said:

I've never traveled via aircraft before, and though I'd like to know what it feels like to be thousands of feet in the sky, I don't want to. Even though it's said to be the safest way to travel, or so I've been told, the very nature of traveling via aircraft frightens me. At least if you're in a land or marine vehicle during an accident, you can walk or swim to safety if the accident isn't too bad. However, if you're on an aircraft during an accident, the result is almost always fatal because the aircraft can go in only one direction: down.

How do you guys feel about traveling via aircraft?

I travel to work via float plane 3 days a week. It's great. I'll take the scenery of B.C.'s coastal mountains over some highway/freeway any day. As for safety, it's a float plane and we cross a body of water, so there is essentially a runway the entire trip.

#48 Posted by thegerg (15270 posts) -

@BranKetra: It certainly could save lives, but as I see it it would be wiser to concentrate on measures that are more realistic and would save more lives.

#49 Edited by BranKetra (48625 posts) -

@thegerg said:

@BranKetra: It certainly could save lives, but as I see it it would be wiser to concentrate on measures that are more realistic and would save more lives.

Please elaborate.

#50 Posted by thegerg (15270 posts) -

@BranKetra said:

@thegerg said:

@BranKetra: It certainly could save lives, but as I see it it would be wiser to concentrate on measures that are more realistic and would save more lives.

Please elaborate.

Elaborate on what?