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A Controversial Tweet Re-Raises an Old Aviation Question: What Part of the Plane Has the Highest Survival Rate in a Crash?

| Oct 21, 2019 | Aviation Accidents |

Recently, USA Today reported on a major airline that received a great deal of criticism for a tweet it published, which discussed the safest place on a plane when it comes to surviving a crash. The social media post stated that passengers in seats near the back have the lowest risk of dying in a crash. While much of the criticism of the airline’s tweet related to the breezy and seemingly insensitive tone of the post, one might still wonder… was it factually correct? Some data appears to indicate that it was.

While commercial airline crashes are thankfully rare, they do sometimes happen still. If you are injured – or a loved one is fatally hurt – in a commercial air flight crash, you may be entitled to damages if the evidence shows that airline negligence contributed to accident. Be sure to reach out without delay to an experienced Chicago aviation accident attorney to learn more about your options.

The tweet that caused the furor was actually the second of a connected pair. The first one cheerfully queried “Do you know which are the safest seats on an #aircraft? Comment the correct answer below and stand a chance to win exciting … goodies!” The second stated that, “According to data studies by Time, the fatality rate for the seats in the middle of the plane is the highest. However, the fatality rate for the seats in the front is marginally lesser and is least for seats at the rear third of a plane.”

That is actually fairly accurate. In 2015, Time reviewed domestic air crash information for accidents that contained both survivors and fatalities and for which seat charts were available. The results showed that people in the rear of the plane had the highest survival rate (68%). Specifically, those in the often-dreaded middle seats in the rear were the absolute highest (72%), while passengers in the aisle seats in the middle third of the plane had the lowest survival rate, at 56%. Overall, the front and middle thirds had nearly the same survival rate, at 62% and 61%, respectively, according to Time.

Popular Mechanics did its own research and, while the percentages were different, the rear again came out on top, with a 69% survival rate. The middle was second at 56% and business and first-class seats had a survival rate of 49%, according to USA Today.

Safer air travel does not mean risk-free travel

Many reports touted 2017 as the safest year ever for commercial air travel. That does not, however, mean that commercial air travel is free of problems. Errors and oversights still lead to dangers and those dangers still result in harm. Whether it is an unsafe overhead bin, an improperly secured beverage cart or inadequate warnings about mid-air turbulence, mistakes and omissions by airline employees or contractors have the potential to cause you significant harm. Your aviation injury may cause you to rack up substantial medical bills, miss valuable time from work and endure a great deal of pain and suffering.

To get the full and fair amount of compensation the laws says you should receive from your aviation injury, retain the diligent Chicago aviation accident attorneys at Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca. Our attorneys have been helping injured passengers and airline employees to get what they deserve. To set up a free case evaluation, contact us at 312-724-5846 or through our website.