2014 Was the Safest Year Ever for Flying (Really)

Yes, even after the recent airline crashes, this was the safest year on record for airplanes.

Between the still missing Malaysia Air flight and the recent AirAsia crash, it feels like this year was one of the worst for air travel in recent memory. But that’s surprisingly not the case—according to the Aviation Safety Network, 2014 had the lowest number of fatal airliner accidents (21) ever. Note that the data only counts commercial airliner (defined as planes with 14 or more passengers, not including corporate jet and military transport) accidents. Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 is excluded from the tally, as it was downed due to an attack, not an accident.

The majority of fatalities that occurred this year were from the Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 which has yet to be found, and from the December AirAsia crash—together, they account for over half of the fatalities this year. Casualties did spike in 2014, likely due to fuller/bigger planes, although the total number of crashes declined.

Do you feel safe flying, or have the high-profile aviation tragedies this year freaked you out? Tell us in the comments.

(Chart: Mapquestify via Reddit)

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